Myanmar continues to emerge from years of isolation and its financial sector is one of the least developed in the world. More than 70% of adults do not have formal access to credit, deposit and other financial services and only 5% of adults have a bank account. However, the industry is undergoing significant changes, not least in the development of private sector banking.

Yoma Bank, a subsidiary of Yoma Strategic Holdings, a GIFT partner, is in the race to becoming one of Myanmar’s leading commercial banks. Having invested heavily in human resources, infrastructure and technology since 2013, Yoma Bank now wants to enhance transparency and corporate governance with the aim of bringing its operations up to international standards.

GIFT partnered with Temasek Management Services Academy in October to co-design and facilitate the experiential learning component of their leadership programme in Myanmar. 30+ mid-level managers from various Temasek-held companies travelled to Yangon to meet local stakeholders and explore new business ideas to produce a gap analysis report to support Yoma Bank in its next stage of enterprise development.

For a summary of the programme check out the programme Round-Up. The programme was featured on Myanmar Business Today.


Building the dairy industry in Myanmar

Myanmar, 1 – 12 September 2014

For its first programme in Myanmar, GIFT partnered with Myanmar Dairy Nutrition, a subsidiary of Yoma Group – one of the country’s leading conglomerates and the only Burmese company listed outside the country. The field project was focused on strengthening the country’s nascent dairy sector.

The Burmese dairy industry is currently characterised by poor milk quality and low yields produced predominantly by smallholder farmers ill-equipped to overcome these challenges. To meet the growing demand, in 2013 Myanmar imported US$40 million worth of dairy products including milk in powdered and UHT form from Malaysia, Thailand, New Zealand and other countries. A growing middle class, increasing urbanisation and the promotion of school milk programmes are all contributing to a growth in consumption of milk.

In September 2014 a group of 26 managers from ORIX Corporation and its subsidiaries and 5 managers from Yoma, representing 19 nationalities, joined the Global Leaders Programme (GLP) in Hong Kong and Yangon. Participants produced a business plan for MDN to bridge the gap between milk supply and demand by establishing local production and processing capabilities and working closely with smallholder farmers to strengthen the supply chain. The proposed business model included an operational plan for a “Parent Farm”, a Smallholder Farmer Supply Initiative to improve the quality and quantity of smallholder production which considers shareholding for key suppliers and a phased approach culminating in a diversification of products in addition to fresh milk and such as yogurt, ice cream and other dairy goods.

For a summary of the programme check out the programme Round-Up and Photo Story.