The Financial Times and IFC have launched a new awards programme that recognises ground-breaking initiatives with the potential to provide long-term, transformative solutions to these challenge. The FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards deepen and expand the FT/IFC Sustainable Finance Awards, which established themselves over eight years as the leading global awards for environmentally and socially responsible banking and investment.
BlueOrchard Loans for Development S.A. (“BOLD”) received the FT/IFC Sustainable Deal of the Year Award in 2008. BOLD was a collateralized loan obligation launched by BlueOrchard Finance together with Morgan Stanley and was a ground-breaking transaction that helped to broaden microfinance as an asset class for mainstream investors. In 2013 BlueOrchard Finance participated in the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards competition in the category of Achievements in Transformational Finance. The nomination under the Transformational Finance category is for the Microfinance Initiative for Asia (MIFA) – Debt Fund managed by BlueOrchard. The Fund was launched in 2012 by the fund sponsors, IFC and KfW, the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and by the European Union. The MIFA Debt Fund was nominated out of more than 220 applications from companies from more than 60 countries. The nomination recognises the unique 3 Tier capital structure of the MIFA Debt Fund and its success in crowding in private investors with an innovative de-risking feature supported by public sponsors and international financial institutions. The objective of the fund is to reach microfinance institutions in as many as 20 different Asian emerging and frontier markets to
promote responsible finance practices and financial inclusion.
Quote Maria Teresa Zappia, Chief Investment Officer at BlueOrchard: “As the MIFA Debt Fund is almost fully subscribed in all its three tranches I can only say that this Public-Private Partnership has simply exceeded our expectations in terms of private investors’ interest”.
BlueOrchard Finance S.A. was founded in 2001 as the first commercial manager of microfinance debt investments worldwide. To this day, the company has deployed in excess of USD 2bn in loans to microfinance institutions, providing access to microcredit to over 30 million individuals across 50 countries. Investors in BlueOrchard-managed funds include private and institutional investors, supranational institutions as well as renowned foundations. The company employs highly experienced staff with backgrounds in traditional and development finance including 28 investment professionals in Geneva, Zurich, Luxembourg, Lima, Phnom Penh, Tbilisi and Nairobi