[SPONSORED STORY] A top conference in October will be “Investment & Innovation in Microfinance: Africa” (www.microfinance-africa.com, date 17-19 October, at Hilton Nairobi Hotel, Kenya). This will cover new regulations, loan products, technologies and social performance tools that would make microfinance institutions (MFIs) more profitable.
Microfinance is financial services aimed at the “bottom of the pyramid”, representing more than 100 million low-income Africans. Services, including financial products, can help them work themselves and their families out of poverty. Effective microfinance can make a huge difference – if done right.
The conference is themed “Transform Your MFI: Comply with Regulation, Strengthen
Governance, Increase Funding, Adopt New Technology” and is the tenth global conference on this topic organized by Hanson Wade. It has a top line-up, including 24 expert speakers, workshops and side events, plus an Investor Fair featuring more than 40 microfinance investors active in Africa, from social investors to banks. Leading MFIs will come from across Africa including Tanzania, Kenya, Malawi, Ghana, Nigeria and Uganda to show participants how to transform their MFIs and their investment strategies.
The meeting is billed as a 3-day intensive learning experience, covering:
• Regulatory update: Recent changes to policy and regulation – Prof Njuguna Ndung’u, Governor, Central Bank of Kenya on enhanced financial inclusion.
• Get ready to become deposit-taking: PRIDE Tanzania and Opportunity Ghana showcase steps they took to keep costs down, maintain client confidence and fulfil the regulator’s expectations. Learn how to strengthen governance, build capacity and infrastructure and commit to social performance measurement to encourage increased funding.
• Who is investing in your country? Hear directly from investors what they are looking for and how you can ensure you benefit from their capital.
• Increase reach through new financial products: Jamii Bora, The Kuyasa Fund, Tujijenge Tanzania and MicroEnergy International showcase how they are increasing access to housing, health, agriculture, education and energy at the “base of the pyramid” (large numbers of poor borrowers and savers).
• Tackle over-indebtedness effectively through credit bureaus, social performance measurement and training. An in-depth working group will confront the challenge of competition and under-cutting and maintain the balance between commercial and social goals.
• Meet the technology providers of the future: From Management Information Systems to mobile, pinpoint which software is most user-friendly and least hassle to implement, and how tomorrow’s biggest service providers help you grow.
Participants at the 2011 conference will be senior directors from MFIs; commercial, social and development banks; local and national governments; non-governmental organizations and foundations; advisory firms; investors; companies which specialize in “base of pyramid” services and products; bankers’ associations; development finance institutions such as the International Finance Corporation (IFC); and bilateral aid agencies including the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID).
The conference is organized by top international organizer, Hanson Wade. Stephanie Cohn Rupp (Principal: Investments at Omidyar Network) commented: “Hanson Wade are fast becoming the deliverers of content and networking in this space”.
The conference already has an excellent website, where you can get full details and make bookings www.microfinance-africa.com. Or call: +44 20 3141 8700 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. For a 10% discount for readers of this blog, please quote the booking code: ACMN.