The e-MFP Investors Action Group results from the enlargement of the former e-MFP Investors in Tier 2&3 MFIs Action Group. Its aim is to provide a platform for a broad spectrum of investors (debt & equity, social and commercial) to share experiences and collaborate on areas of common interest.
Social and Environmental Management Practices (SPEM) and Client Outcomes
In 2022, the e-MFP Investors AG supported the start of a new research collaboration between Cerise+SPTF and 60 Decibels, drawing from 60DB data and SPI data, to study the links between social and environmental performance practices and better outcomes for clients. The initial results from this exploratory study were presented during the European Microfinance Week 2022 panel session 'The Drivers for Better Outcomes' (see presentation in Resources below).
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Outcomes Measurement
Since 2019, the e-MFP Investors Action Group (AG) has developed a project led by CERISE to explore innovative approaches for investors on measuring and reporting outcomes using the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This has been a collaborative project involving also SPTF’s Outcomes Working Group, which continues previous joint work on the topic of outcomes measurement and management and complements other initiatives such as CERISE’s LabODD.
Its final output – the report “Outcomes Management for Financial Service Providers: A proposed standard framework aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals” (see Resources) is the project’s contribution to build a framework of actionable indicators based on the SDG targets that can answer the need for a simple, credible methodology to monitor outcomes: one that is built on a well-defined social strategy and theory of change, and that is assessed regularly through internal data management systems.
The report draws on the experiences of a diverse range of stakeholders, including investors, DFIs and FSPs. In the exchange of knowledge and experiences between the stakeholders, the lively discussions moderated by CERISE during the European Microfinance Week both in 2020 and 2021 were particularly important (access the summaries of these discussions and the sessions recordings in Resources).
In 2022, the AG continued its collaboration with Cerise+SPTF co-organising a series of events aiming to share lessons learned and exchange experiences between different stakeholders, namely investors and financial service providers. These included:
- Outcomes Management Workshop Series online meetings with Investors (13 September) and FSPs (20 September)
- Outcomes Sessions at the Cerise + SPTF Annual Meeting 2022 (28 & 29 September)
- e-MFP Investors AG and LabODD (SDG Lab) working session at EMW 2022 (16 November)
- EMW 2022 Panel Session ‘The Drivers for Better Outcomes’ (16 November)
In these events, both online and in-person, discussions focused on agreeing on a common set of outcomes indicators and a core questionnaire to collect reliable and useful outcomes data from the end clients. The selected outcomes indicators are to be included in the new version of SPI online assessment tools in 2023. This will support both FSPs and the related stakeholders (e.g., investors, networks, regulators) collecting and analysing relevant data that contributes to informed decisions for building strong social and environmental strategies and operations, to ease the reporting to the various investors, and to better understand the impact of financial services on the end clients. Presentations and other materials related to these sessions are available below in Resources.
Cerise+ SPTF Annual Meeting panel session, September 2022 (session notes)
Cerise+ SPTF Annual Meeting working session, September 2022 (session notes)
Outcomes Management Workshop Series, September 2022 (report)
EMW 2021 Panel Session: Impact and Outcomes Measurement – Investors’ Perspective (summary and recording)
EMW 2020 Panel Session: Impact investing and reporting on SDGs outcomes (summary and recording)
- Responsible Exits
In partnership with NpM, Platform for Inclusive Finance and the Financial Inclusion Equity Council (FIEC), the Action Group explored the question of how social investors committed to advancing responsible finance practices should exit responsibly from the MFIs in which they have invested over the years.
- Social Performance in SME Finance
The Action Group has partnered with SPTF and CDC in a joint project that has as objective consolidating the information available on how to evaluate social and environmental performance management (SPM) for FSPs financing SMEs. In order to do so, the project aims to map the relevance and applicability for SME finance of the USSPM, MIV due diligence tools and other frameworks, identify possible gaps and provide indications on how to fill the gaps.
- Social Performance Outcomes
In 2016-2017 the Action Group partnered with SPTF and its Outcomes Working Group in order to develop guidelines for integrating outcomes measurement into the operations of inclusive finance investors.
See Guidelines On Outcomes Management For Investors: Guidelines for integrating outcomes management, analysis and reporting into the operations of inclusive finance investors, asset managers, and other funders, October 2016
Since 2015, the Action Group organises trainings for investment officers with a two-fold objective: increasing the officers’ capacity on different aspects related to due diligence and improving networking among officers in order to facilitate the sharing of main conclusions of due diligence between the key MIVs, and thus, ultimately, improve the social and financial performance of MFIs.
The following trainings have taken place:
Delivered by Elza Herman, the training took place on October 13th 2017 in Addis Ababa, in the framework of the African Microfinance Week.
Delivered by Alex Silva and Georgina Vázquez, from OMTRIX, this training took place on November 16th 2016, in the framework of the European Microfinance Week.
How to assess the management information system (MIS) during a due diligence process
Delivered by Gabriel Metz and Patrick Gobin, eCacaoS, the training took place on November 18th 2015, in the framework of the European Microfinance Week.
The training was organized again on April 11th 2016 in The Hague in partnership with Npm, Platform for Inclusive Finance and Cordaid.
Challenges encountered while conducting due diligence of Tier 2/3 MFIs
Delivered by Gregory Thys and Charles Cordier, from Azimut Inclusive Finance, the training took place on July 3rd 2015 in Dakar, in the framework of the African Microfinance Week.