22-23 OCTOBER 2019



Scale-Up Your Impact | How MFIs Can Navigate & Thrive in the Age of Fintech Revolution

Some of the biggest challenges MFIs struggle to overcome today are high operating costs, scalability and low earnings. And it is widely believed today that the provision of financial technology (fintech) innovations is expected to help MFIs reduce their costs, increase operational efficiency and remain competitive in the rapidly changing financial landscape. Additionally, new players like fintech-based lenders and mobile network operators are entering the microfinance industry and targeting the unbanked and the financially excluded segments. How successfully MFIs respond to this dynamic and competitive environment will also determine which actors will survive (remain more relevant) within the financial inclusion industry in the near future.

What’s more, investment in the fintech industry has globally raced ahead to the levels unseen before. In 2018, global investment in fintech companies hit a record high 111.8 billion USD. Fintech investments in Asia increased from $12 billion* in 2017 to $22.7 billion in 2018, dominated by Ant Financial’s record-setting deal ($14 billion). Even though the investments slowed significantly in the second half of the year, it is highly expected that fintech investments will remain strong in Asia and play a crucial role in shaping the dynamics of the financial inclusion industry.**

The 2nd Annual Asia Pacific Microfinance Forum will shed light on how the pioneering microfinance sector players (MFIs, social impact investors, banks, international finance organizations, among many others) evaluate the potential uses, critical success factors as well as implementation challenges of the recent fintech developments in the financial inclusion sector. It will be an invaluable opportunity for sector players to meet their potential/existing business partners and help shape the future of microfinancing in the Asia Pacific region.

*All figures are in US dollars
** KPMG, Global Fintech Investments, 2018

Day 1 | 22 October 2019

KEYNOTES – from the pioneering investors, banks and funders:
  • Macroeconomic outlook on the APAC microfinance sector in 2019
  • Growth strategies to attract funding from the impact investors
  • Learning how to develop a new sustainable approach to microfinance in the Fintech era
  • Developing innovative blended capital structures for microfinance investments
  • Leveraging new product channels for microfinance customers
  • Tailored product design and effective pricing strategies for MFIs
  • Digitizing internal audit to drive top-line growth
INTERVIEWS – with the impact investors:
  • Why do some MFIs receive the investment they need, and some others don’t?
  • How to support scalable MFI business models to attract more funding
  • What will be the priority sectors and countries for impact investors in 2020?
ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSIONS – on helping MFIs become more resilient:
  • Developing applicable and innovative business models for MFIs
  • Improving the efficiency of MFIs decision-making processes
  • Which internal challenges stop MFIs reaching their potential

Day 2 | 23 October 2019

KEYNOTES – from the most innovative Fintech companies and MFIs:
  • What it takes for MFIs to go digital
  • The challenges for MFIs and Fintech companies to actively engage and build partnerships – and the consequences of not engaging
  • What can MFIs learn from banks and Fintechs – or vice versa?
  • What will be the significance of soft-skills as microfinance moves into the digital age
  • Is there a risk for some MFIs to become irrelevant?
  • What are the competitive advantages of MFIs? How can MFIs strengthen them and keep their competitive edge?
INTERACTIVE LUNCH – to share experiences and build business networks
  • The discussion topics are chosen by the participants
  • Great opportunity for in-depth discussions
  • Peer-to-peer learning and knowledge sharing
COUNTRY SPECIFIC CASES – to learn from the hands-on experiences of MFIs operating the Asia Pacific region
  • Cooperation between banks and MFIs for lending in solar home systems
  • Crowdfunding MSMEs
  • Rural & agricultural finance


Play Video
Play Video


from previous event

Asia Pacific Microfinance Forum


Swapnil Kant Neeraj

Principal Investment Officer – Microfinance Lead

IFC (International Finance Corporation), Singapore

Natt Phimnipharh Setthawong

Investment Manager, Financial Institutions Asia

Norfund, Thailand

Amit Kumar Rathi

Managing Director

Unitus Capital, India

Pierrick Balmain

Head of APAC Business Development

BlueOrchard Investments, Singapore

Bernhard Eikenberg

Fund Manager

Bamboo Capital Partners, Luxembourg

Estelle Darie-Rousseaux

Executive Director

Amret – ADVANS GROUP, Cambodia

Stephanie Bilo

Chief Client and Investment Solution Officer

responsAbility Investments, Switzerland

Pranav Kumar

Associate Director

Leapfrog Investments, Singapore

Daphne Ng


JEDTrade, Singapore

Anshukant Taneja

Principal Investment Specialist – Microfinance Program

Asian Development Bank, Philippines

Debbie Watkins

Managing Director – APMEA

Fern Software, Singapore

Abhishek Agrawal

SVP & Chief Regional Officer

Accion, India

Nyi Nyein Aye


ThitsaWorks, Myanmar

Cameron Goldie-Scot


Musoni, The Netherlands

Sertac Yeltekin

Chief Operating Officer

Insitor Partners VC, Singapore

Santhosh Nellayappan

Senior VP & Product Head

Sumeru Solutions, India

Rahul Jessel Mittra

Managing Director & CEO

Margdarshak, India

Vineet Chattree


Svatantra Microfinance, India

H.P. Singh

Chairman & Managing Director

Satin Creditcare Network Ltd., India

Freek Kortekaas

Regional Manager – Asia Pacific

Triple Jump, Thailand

Maxim Chernuschenko

Founder & CEO

Cashwagon, Singapore

Borce Dimovski

Managing Partner

ASPEKT – Business Analyses and Global Solutions, Macedonia

Michal Matul

Senior Advisor at AXA Emerging Customers

AXA Group, France

George Harrap

Founder & CEO

Bitspark Ltd., Hong Kong

Stefan Martiniak


First MicroFinance Company, Kyrgyzstan

Farmina Hossain

Additional Director Program, Head of Microfinance Operation

Buro Bangladesh

Gagandeep Sehgal

Chief Operating Officer

Margdarshak, India

Andrew McCusker

Head of Education Finance

Opportunity International, UK

Gonzalo Gonzales


DAWN Microfinance, Myanmar

Sothany Chun


First Finance, Cambodia



  • Learn how to overcome your operational challenges and grow your business to achieve deeper social & economic impact in the industry
  • Meet the like-minded experts, global innovators and market-leading companies shaping the future of microfinance industry
  • Unlock unparalleled opportunities for your business
  • Connect with the decision makers, investors, and senior-level executives
  • Gain the key insights into how to adapt to the most dynamic microfinancing environment
  • Help shape future trends in the financial inclusion industry


“Extremely professional arrangements and organization. Really appreciated the experience.”
— Amret Microfinance Institute, Chief Financial Officer, Cambodia
“It is a very good chance for meeting with creditors, MFIs, and technological solution suppliers.”
— Sathapana Limited, Chief Operating Officer, Myanmar
“Great conference and thanks for having me.”
— Senior Investment Specialist, Asian Development Bank, Philippines
“Topics are very relevant and interesting.”
— Project Development Officer, Agricultural Credit Policy Council, Philippines
“Apart from the fact that it’s a well-organized and professional organization, what I enjoyed is the people that attend this event from a broad background of microfinance practitioners, providers of technology and other services to the industry.”
— Founding and Managing Partner, Goodwell Investments, the Netherlands
“I met many investors from different countries. It was a great experience because I had a chance to develop contact with them.”
— CEO, Vijaya Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha Ltd., Nepal
“The themes are always very well chosen so it is forward-looking. It is always something new to learn for us besides getting to know new players.”
— Senior Fund Manager, C-QUADRAT Asset Management GmbH, Austria

Where and When?


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