Citi Foundation

Microfinance and Community Development Finance

More than 75% of the world's poor do not have a formal way of engaging with financial services. That means 2.5 billion people worldwide are depending on unreliable, insufficient, and usually expensive ways to manage their finances. These informal mechanisms are especially vulnerable to shocks and emergencies that push this population further into poverty. Linking low-income individuals with financial services helps improve the economic outlook of their households and opens the doors for greater opportunities.

Leading microfinance institutions (MFIs) and community development financial institutions (CDFIs) show that it is possible to provide appropriate financial services to those outside the financial mainstream. These institutions play a critical role in advancing financial inclusion in low-income communities around the world. A trend has emerged which indicates that more and more low-income people are benefitting by participating in formal financial programs. Despite these gains, ample opportunity exists to increase financial inclusion around the world. However, increasing the flow of capital to MFIs and CDFIs alone is not enough to maintain growth. It is also essential to invest in the capacity of these institutions to manage responsible growth and scale the capital markets available to low-income clients as well as support the development of the human capital-staff, leadership, and governance-that enable these institutions to thrive and ensure clients positively benefit from their services.


Our Strategy

The Citi Foundation supports microfinance institutions (MFIs) and community development financial Institutions (CDFIs) that seek to increase the availability of credit and asset building financial products and services. In 2013, the Foundation invested $10.5 million to build the institutional and management capacity of MFIs, CDFIs, intermediary organizations and industry networks that are enhancing access to their new credit and asset building financial products and services.

Recognizing the important role that these organizations play in the financial services ecosystem, we also invest in innovative efforts that enhance an institution's ability to achieve scale and financial sustainability.


1 Ardic, Oya Pinar, et al. " Financial Access 2012: Getting to a More Comprehensive Picture". Access to Finance Forum, 2013.

Examples of Our Leadership

Developing the leadership of microfinance and community development finance
Developing the leadership of microfinance and community development finance
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	Financial Inclusion 2020
 
Financial Inclusion 2020
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