Banco Adopem and Fondo Esperanza, banks belonging to the BBVA Microfinance Foundation (BBVAMF), have attended the VIII Central American and Caribbean Microfinance Conference, a key event for the sector, where 800 international experts shared their experiences in the field of microfinance products and services that contribute to the development of vulnerable people in Latin America, and thus to the economic progress of the region.
At the conference, Fondo Esperanza presented the Social Performance Management System, one of the hallmarks of the BBVAMF Group. The aim is to generate social indicators to measure the impact on the entrepreneurs’ quality of life, the development of their businesses, their socioeconomic well-being, empowerment and social capital, and look at poverty from a multidimensional perspective. The Department for Measuring Impact and Strategic Development (MIDE) makes a rigorous and detailed measurement of these indicators in the Group’s microfinance institutions.
Daniela Olfos, manager of Development and Service at Fondo Esperanza, explained that “this system is firmly grounded in information architecture. We measure the degree of success in complying with a series of quantitative and qualitative social metrics in a systematic and periodic way. It is an accessible and pragmatic model. After two years, 36% of our customers have risen above the poverty threshold”.
After one year with the institution, vulnerable entrepreneurs with Fondo Esperanza see improvements of an average of 31% in the development of their business, 27% in their family’s well-being, 1.6% in their own empowerment and 23% in their social capital, explained Daniela Olfos in her talk on the panel entitled “The Challenge of Financial Inclusion with Social Impact”.
Mariano Frontera, SME coordinator at Banco Adopem, highlighted the importance of “diversifying the offer of microcredit products and orienting them so they have an impact on the economic and social situation of microentrepreneurs. They have to be products that can be clearly differentiated from the traditional banking offer”. Frontera took part in the panel entitled “Product Diversification and Innovation for the Financial Industry” along with experts from Panama, Honduras and Ecuador.
Also at the conference, Banco Adopem officially received the Client Protection Certification from The Smart Campaign, which rewards institutions that offer financial services to individuals from low-income households, and whose standards of service fulfill the seven Protection Principles laid down in this international initiative.
Banco Adopem is the first microfinance institution in the Dominican Republic to obtain this certification. Mercedes Canalda de Beras-Goico accepted this certificate on behalf of the bank. The executive president of Banco Adopem also took part in the conference as the moderator of the panel entitled “Debate on the Development Outlook for Microfinance and the Role of Technology in that vision”.
In addition, Claudio González-Vega, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the BBVAMF, received the Award for Excellence in Microfinance, a distinction granted by the Banco Centroamericano de Integración Económica (Central-American Bank for Economic Integration -BCIE), for “his contribution to the development of the microfinance sector”. This is the first time the BCIE has distinguished an important individual on a personal basis.
The VIII Central American and Caribbean Microfinance Conference, organized by the Central American and Caribbean Microfinance Network (REDCAMIF) and the Nicaraguan Association of Microfinance Institutions (ASOMIF), was held in Nicaragua under the heading “Technology, competitiveness and financial inclusion”.