The International Association of Microfinance Investors, the global organization dedicated exclusively to addressing the needs of commercially oriented microfinance investors, this week announced its launch and founding board of directors. The organizations creation was conceived by a group of leading professionals from various sectors of the microfinance industry seeking to improve the global environment for microfinance investing. Seed capital to launch the new association was provided by Omidyar Network of Redwood City, CA and the DOEN Foundation of Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Sam Moss, president of Gray Matters Capital in Atlanta, GA, which manages a portfolio of social investments aimed at connecting social investors with social enterprises, has been appointed as IAMFIs chairman. Under his leadership, the association will work to provide microfinance investors, particularly those who use microfinance investment vehicles (MIVs), with credible, objective industry information and proprietary research, conferences and meetings for education and networking, and opportunities for dialogue and consensus-building among sector players.
I am pleased to see IAMFI launched, said Moss. To provide investors with independent and comprehensive information that facilitates investment in MIVs has been a long-held goal of many. At each step, we have been encouraged and actively supported by the full spectrum of industry participants. These have included IAMFIs initial Working Group participants, such as MicroVest, the Dignity Fund and the Inter-American Development Bank, and fellow board members whose expertise in and commitment to microfinance are invaluable assets for IAMFI. I am particularly delighted that Joan Trant, with her extensive experience in international asset management and Latin American microfinance organizations, has joined as executive director to lead us.
IAMFIs international board represents a wide range of institutional and individual microfinance investors. Additional board officers are: vice chairman Scott Budde, managing director, TIAA-CREF; treasurer Marilou van Golstein Brouwers, managing director, Triodos Investment Management BV; secretary Greg Casagrande, founder and president, both SPBD Microfinance and MicroDreams; and voting member Ian Callaghan, head of microfinance, Morgan Stanley. They are joined on the founding board by Tryfan Evans, director, Omidyar-Tufts Microfinance Fund; Terri Lecamp, founding partner and chief operating officer, Plainfield Asset Management LLC; Ann Miles, U.S. director, Blue Orchard Finance S.A.; and Gerhard Pries, president, MEDA Investments Inc.
The board of directors will serve the associations growing membership of current and potential microfinance investors. IAMFIs ultimate objective is to foster the virtuous circle of capital flows between private sector sources, investment vehicles and microfinance institutions, enabling access to capital and other financial services to the working poor throughout the world.