Aga Khan Agency for Microfinance
The Aga Khan Agency for Microfinance (AKAM) has been operating since 2005, when it was established by His Highness the Aga Khan as a Swiss non-profit foundation to formalize the various microcredit initiatives of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN).
The Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) itself is a group of development agencies with mandates that include the environment, health, education, architecture, culture, microfinance, rural development, disaster reduction, promotion of the private-sector enterprise, and revitalization of the historic cities. AKDN agencies conduct their programs without regard to faith, origin or gender. For more than 60 years, various agencies of AKDN have offered microfinance services through integrated development programs and self-sustaining microfinance institutions.
Indeed, over the past sixty years, AKDN has integrated the mission of financial inclusion in the framework of many projects within the various agencies of the network. Thus, AKAM was established to serve as a center of excellence for conceptualizing, realizing and assessing the impact of these efforts. AKAM aims to improve the quality of life of vulnerable populations by helping them increase their incomes, become self-sufficient and acquire the skills needed to access traditional financial markets. AKAM contributes to a global vision that enables lasting quality of life changes for poor and unserved communities in emerging countries, ultimately creating “communities of opportunity” that thrive on their own.
In order to achieve its vision and mission, AKAM has adopted the following objectives:
- Increase financial inclusion of poor people by offering a full range of services and products, including credit and savings products for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, which are needs-oriented and cost-effective.
- Collaborate and build on AKDN’s other investments in different sectors to address all aspects of quality of life with a view to achieve maximum impact and reach.
- Maintain sustainability of the environment and sustainability of each institution.
AKAM operates through a regulated network of banks and microfinance institutions on four continents and in six countries, including Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Egypt, Mali and Syria. One of the major elements of AKAM’s mission has been to implement projects and bring microfinance institutions to a certain stage of maturity, providing the necessary initial capital as well as the technical assistance required in many areas. As these institutions develop, AKAM ensures their evolution and transition to a diverse shareholding, financial sustainability and strong institutional capacity at both the governance and management levels. In recent years, AKAM has already ensured this transition for its subsidiaries in Pakistan, Tajikistan, Madagascar, and most recently Kyrgyzstan.
Kreditanstalt Fur Wiederaufbau (KFW)
KFW is a German government-owned development bank based in Frankfurt. KFW provides economic impulses for the economy, society, and ecology in Germany, Europe, and the world. It supports change, promotes promising ideas, finances investments, and accompanies consulting services in developing countries. It carries out its work and its development mandate on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
International Finance Corporation (IFC)
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. IFC works in more than 100 countries, using its capital, expertise, and influence to create needs and opportunities in developing countries. In the first quarter of 2020, IFC invested USD 22 Billion in private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty.
Aga Khan Foundation – USA (AKF – USA)
AKF – the USA, established in 1981 in Washington DC, is a private, non-denominational, not-for-profit international organization committed to struggling against poverty, hunger, illiteracy, and poor health, primarily in Africa and Asia. The Foundation works to address the root causes of poverty by supporting and sharing innovative solutions in health, education, rural development, civil society, and the environment. Using community-based approaches to meet basic human needs, the Foundation builds the capacity of community and non-governmental organizations to have a lasting impact on reducing poverty. AKF has had branches and affiliates in 20 countries, with its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, since 1967. AKF – USA is an Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN). AKF – USA’s role within the network includes mobilizing resources and strategic partnerships with various U.S-based institutional partners, including government agencies, policy institutes, corporations, foundations, Non-Governmental organizations (NGOs), universities, associations, and professional networks. AKF – the USA serves as a learning institution for program enhancement, policy dialogue, and dissemination of best practices and knowledge resources. It collaborates to provide technical, financial, and capacity-building support to other international AKDN agencies and programs. In facilitating and representing AKDN interests in the U.S., AKF – USA organizes outreach campaigns, manages volunteer resources, and conducts development education among U.S. constituencies.