The Council acts as the principal “go-to” resource for fund managers and the industry for the development of best practices and industry initiatives. In this role, it serves as a channel of communication within and between its own membership; it is also often approached by industry participants to represent the voice and interests of equity fund managers.
Initiatives include, but are not limited to:
- The “Microfinance Banana Skins” survey, in collaboration with Citi, CGAP and Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation (CSFI). The survey explores the risks facing the microfinance industry in the context of challenges such as growth, changing economic environments and an expanding product range.
- Governance Guidelines, The Practice of Corporate Governance in Shareholder—Owned Microfinance Institutions; provides practical guidance for stakeholders in governance– investors and prospective investors, board members, and senior managers – to use in strengthening the governance of their own MFIs. The Council is updating this reference document to reflect new thinking and resources that have emerged in the industry around governance, with expanded sections on risk management and social performance.
- The Council supports the CGAP and J.P. Morgan Global Microfinance Valuation Survey. This report combines CGAP and FIEC knowledge of microfinance with J.P. Morgan’s equity research skills in emerging markets. The objective of the project is to provide benchmarks for valuation of microfinance equity.
- FIEC collaborated with responsAbility, Triodos, and the Center for Microfinance at the University of Zurich to publish “Over-indebtedness and Microfinance: Constructing an Early Warning Index.” As responsible investors, FIEC members place great importance on reducing the risk of over-indebtedness. Triple Jump has recently joined this effort and is taking the lead on producing a follow-up over-indebtedness study.
- FIEC’s signature series, “The Growth of Commercial Microfinance”, seeks to illustrate the changes in growth, expansion and maturity of the commercial microfinance industry over the past eight years.