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Banking on Tomorrow

Creating Markets and De-risking Investments in Fragile & Conflict Affected States

Côte d’Ivoire |  - 
Speakers include:
John  Aglionby

John Aglionby

Financial Times

Joy Macknight

Joy Macknight

The Banker

His Excellency Daniel Kablan  Duncan

His Excellency Daniel Kablan Duncan

Government of Côte d'Ivoire


The Financial Times and IFC (International Finance Corporation) are bringing together senior thinkers from governments, finance, banking, NGOs and the corporate sector to explore the international effort to move countries out of fragility and into stability and growth.

fallback Add to my Calendar 09/13/2017 15:00:0009/14/2017 19:00:00trueBanking on TomorrowThe Financial Times and IFC (International Finance Corporation) are bringing together senior thinkers from governments, finance, banking, NGOs and the corporate sector to explore the international effort to move countries out of fragility and into stability and growth.Banking-on-Tomorrowa299f3a90e12093fe33d3ac28382eb30MM/DD/YYYY

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Fragility and conflict are among the greatest development challenges of our time. Two billion people now live in countries where development outcomes are affected by fragility, conflict and violence. Extreme poverty will increasingly be concentrated in these areas as the rest of the world makes progress, rising from 17% of the global total in 2016 to almost 50% by 2030 due to high population growth rates and weak economic development. Breaking out of poverty can be nearly impossible.

Damaged infrastructure and trade, weakened institutions, destroyed regulatory frameworks, political uncertainty, as well as no access to clean water and limited educational opportunities, are all challenges that citizens and businesses in fragile states must contend with. However, a number of these countries are making significant progress and rebuilding rapidly.

While aid – and even the deployment of peacekeepers – is an important part of the rebuilding process, these states must move beyond aid dependency. A strong private sector, backed up by a robust banking industry is essential for providing goods and services, generating tax revenues and creating employment opportunities.


Media Coverage from Event

National TV  (Sept 14th 2017) It starts at 11 mins 16 seconds.


Le Vice-Président ivoirien à la Conférence « Banking on Tomorrow » de IFC et de Financial Times

Stimuler la stabilité et le développement dans les états fragiles au centre du forum « Banking on Tomorrow »

Le Vice-Président ivoirien Daniel Kablan Duncan salue le choix de la Cote d’Ivoire par  la SFI pour le projet de développement du secteur prive de l’IDA

Stimuler la stabilité et le développement dans les états fragiles au centre du forum « Banking on Tomorrow »

 Agence Ivoirienne de Presse (AIP)

La SFI et Financial Times explorent les moyens de stimuler la stabilité et le développement dans les états fragiles

 APA News

La Côte d'Ivoire enregistre un déficit budgétaire de moins de 3%



Join us to hear case studies of how economies are being built and lives are being transformed in select fragile states.

Find out how the investment climate can be enhanced in fragile and conflict-affected states so opportunities can be created in sectors such as agribusiness, telecommunications, financial services and power generation.

Discover how regulations can be improved, simplified and strengthened to attract investors and enable businesses to expand.

Discuss how domestic and international investment is being mobilised and access to finance is being improved for SMEs and major companies alike.

Hear how to make the most of risky opportunities to deliver higher returns in fragile and conflict-affected states.



John  Aglionby

John Aglionby

Assistant UK News Editor
Financial Times

John Aglionby has been the Financial Times’ Assistant UK News Editor since returning from a three-year posting as East Africa Correspondent in August. In Africa he covered 13 countries from Nairobi. Mr Aglionby joined the FT in 2006 as Jakarta Correspondent before moving to London in 2009 to the world news desk as International Economy News Editor. In 2013 Mr Aglionby moved to the main news desk as a Senior Reporter and News Editor on the live news desk, where he was at the heart of the team that implemented the FT’s transition to a digital first news organisation. Before working for the FT, Mr Aglionby was the south-east Asia Correspondent for the Guardian and the Indonesia Reporter for the Economist.

Joy Macknight

Joy Macknight

Managing Editor
The Banker

Joy Macknight is Managing Editor at The Banker, having previously been Deputy Editor and Technology Editor, covering transaction banking, fintechs and technology. Previously, she was Features Editor at Profit & Loss, a foreign exchange and derivatives magazine and conference producer. Before that, she was Editorial Director at Treasury Today and Editor at gtnews, which cover corporate treasury. She also worked as a staff writer on Banking Technology and IBM Computer Today, as well as a freelancer on Computer Weekly. She has a BSc from the University of Victoria, Canada.


His Excellency Daniel Kablan  Duncan

His Excellency Daniel Kablan Duncan

Vice President
Government of Côte d'Ivoire
Ibrahim  Stevens

Ibrahim Stevens

Deputy Governor
Bank of Sierra Leone

Ibrahim Stevens has been Deputy Governor of the Bank of Sierra Leone since July 2014. He is an experienced central banker, research economist and senior policy analyst. He was previously Country Programme Director for the DfID-funded International Growth Centre (IGC), which is based at the London School of Economics. Before joining the IGC, he was Macroeconomic Adviser to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development in Rwanda and Head of Project for the German International Cooperation (GIZ)-funded project on Macroeconomic Advice to Rwanda. The project also covered the Central Bank of Rwanda. Before moving to Rwanda, he was a Senior Economist at the Bank of England for 10 years, where he worked in Financial Stability and Monetary Analysis. He was also an adviser and manager at its Centre for Central Banking Studies (CCBS), where he provided policy advice and capacity building, and promoted collaboration with other central banks. In this role, he visited more than 40 central banks/countries. In 2008-2009, he was seconded to the Bank of Sierra Leone as Senior Policy Adviser and Head of Research. Dr Stevens has a PhD in Financial Economics from Durham University, UK. His research interests are financial stability, monetary analysis and applied financial econometrics. His work has been published in a number of international academic journals. 

Ben  Kruger

Ben Kruger

Chief Executive Officer
Standard Bank Group

Ben Kruger was appointed as Co-Chief Executive Officer of Standard Bank Group Limited in 2013. He is also a Director of ICBC Standard Bank Plc, Stanbic Africa Holdings Limited and Standard Bank of South Africa Limited. In 2011, as Deputy Group Chief Executive, Mr Kruger was responsible for both major banking business lines: Corporate & Investment Banking and Personal & Business Banking. In 2006, he was appointed Chief Executive, Global Corporate and Investment Banking, Standard Bank Group. He became its Chief Operating Officer in 2008. He joined Standard Corporate and Merchant Bank in 1985 working in corporate and investment banking. He was promoted to Deputy Chief Executive in 1998 and Chief Executive in 2001. Mr Kruger has a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) from the University of Pretoria, South Africa. He served his articles at Peat Marwick Mitchel & Co (KPMG), qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, and completed the Advanced Programme in Management at Harvard Business School. 

Jean-François  Valette

Jean-François Valette

Ambassador and Head
EU delegation in Côte d'Ivoire

Jean-François Valette has been the EU’s Ambassador to Côte d'Ivoire since December 2014. Prior to that, he was Ambassador to Congo. Other previous posts include Préfet to l'Ariège; Ambassador to Cameroon, Ambassador to Togo; and Council Minister to Ottawa. He has also held positions in Madagascar, Hong Kong and France's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He has a diploma from the Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS) and a diploma from the École Nationale d'Administration (ENA).

Mossadeck Bally

Mossadeck Bally

Founder, Chairman and CEO
Azalaï Hotels Group

Mossadeck Bally is the Founder, Chairman and CEO of the Azalaï Hotels Group, a leading private hotel chain group in West Africa. Mr Bally started in the African hospitality industry in his home country of Mali. In 1994, he established the special purpose vehicle, Société Malienne de Promotion Hôtelière (SMPH), to acquire the first hotel of the future Azalaï Hotels Group through the state privatisation of the Grand Hôtel de Bamako in the nation's capital. In 2000, he built the Salam Hotel and entered into a management agreement for the Hotel Nord Sud, both in Bamako. In 2005, Mr Bally consolidated his activities under the Azalaï Hotels brand and announced plans to expand in West Africa. The Azalaï Hotels Group has expanded into Burkina Faso with the acquisition of the Hotel Independence (2004); Guinea Bissau, Hotel 24 de Setembro (2007); Benin, Hotel de la Plage (2008); and more recently to Nouakchott, Abidjan, and in the near future Dakar, Niamey and Conakry. Mr Bally has a BSc in Business Administration from the University of San Francisco, California.

Mohamed  Béavogui

Mohamed Béavogui

Director-General, African Risk Capacity and
Assistant Secretary General, United Nations

Mohamed Béavogui is Director-General of African Risk Capacity and United Nations Assistant Secretary General (ASG). An expert in agricultural finance, he wasappointed Director-General in September 2015.  Mr Béavogui had previously been elected first African General Manager of African Risk Capacity (ARC) in January 2015 during the third annual African Union conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

He has more than 25 years of international experience in development, and before joining ARC was the Director of Partnerships and Resource Mobilization and Senior Advisor to the President of the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Mr Béavogui joined IFAD in 2001 as Director of Programs for West and Central Africa. Before this he worked for seven years with the UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS) in New York as a Senior Project Management Officer and subsequently as Regional Director for West and Central Africa. He was previously Chief Technical adviser at the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Before this, Mr Béavogui worked at the African Regional Centre for Engineering Design and Manufacturing (ARCEDEM) in Nigeria, and for the government of Guinea.

He is a member of several panels working on regional and global issues related to food security and rural development, and the recipient of several honours and awards.

Mr Béavogui has a Master’s degree in Engineering from Saint Petersburg Polytechnic, Russia, a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Gamel Abdel Nasser University, Guinea, and trained in executive management at Harvard Kennedy School.

Dadié  Tayoraud

Dadié Tayoraud

Chief Operating Officer
Injaro Investments

Dadié Tayoraud is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) and co-founder of Injaro Investments Limited (IIL), a US$50m agribusiness SME fund targeting West Africa.

Before IIL, he was an active advisor and investor in agricultural SMEs and had been a Business Development Manager at Voodoo Group, a leading communications company in francophone West Africa. In this role, he supported small companies to achieve their growth and expansion goals, including defining and executing a US$1m regional rollout for a marketing and communications firm spanning several West and Central African countries. His personal investments include a rice and cassava-processing mill in rural Côte d'Ivoire. He has also worked with women's cooperatives, providing them with basic managerial skills to improve production yields. 

Mr Tayoraud began his career as Assistant Financial Controller at Hotel Ivoire Inter-Continental and was later a business development professional in New York for Henry Schein, a worldwide distributor of medical, dental products and services, and veterinary supplies.

He is a graduate of the Ecole Supérieure de Commerce d'Abidjan (ESCA) and has an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. 

Arnaud  Ventura

Arnaud Ventura

Founder and CEO
Microcred/Baobab Group

Arnaud Ventura is Founder and CEO of Microcred/Baobab Group. He is a serial entrepreneur, and after co-founding PlaNet Finance Group with Jacques Attali (now Positive PlaNet) in 1998, he founded Microcred Group in 2006. He also co-founded the Positive Economy Forum in 2012, and the French China Young Leaders Foundation in 2013.

Mr Ventura built Microcred as an investment company investing and running a group of digital microfinance banks operating in Africa and China. Microcred owns 12 banks and non-bank financial institutions serving more than 600,000 clients.

Microcred has developed a digital offering, Baobab, to reach out to a larger number of underserved clients in Africa. Through Baobab, Microcred offers agent banking, mobile banking and Pay As you Go solutions to clients who are out of reach of traditional financial services.

Before co-founding PlaNet Finance, he worked for BNP Paribas in France and Argentina and participated in the creation of two leading internet providers in France and in Thailand (Club- Internet and Internet Thaïland).

Mr Ventura was nominated a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum (Davos) in 2013. He was nominated a French American Young Leader in 2005.

Philip Andrew  Wabulya

Philip Andrew Wabulya

Executive Director Operations
Bank of Uganda

Philip Andrew Wabulya is Executive Director Operations at the Bank of Uganda. In this role he oversees implementation of monetary policy, reserves management, currency printing and distribution, and government payments.

He has more than 20 years of banking experience, including 18 with commercial banks and five at Uganda’s Central Bank.  

Mr Wabulya started his banking career at Standard Chartered Bank, then joined the team that established Citibank Uganda Limited, where he worked for seven years. He later joined Stanbic Bank Uganda Limited, where he worked for six years, joining Bank of Uganda in June 2012 in his current role.

He has a Masters in International Management.

Nisrin  Hala

Nisrin Hala

Executive Director, Head of Africa Desk, Global Trade Finance Department
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Europe

Nisrin Hala heads the Africa Desk of the Global Trade Finance Department at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Europe (SMBCE) in London. She manages a portfolio of assets across various markets in North, East, West and South Africa. It comprises central and commercial banks, corporates, multilaterals and development finance institutions (DFIs). The Africa Desk primarily originates, structures and provides short-term debt solutions to finance institutions that are active in trade import and export. Ms Hala has been with SMBCE for 10 years. She has previously worked for Wachovia Bank (Wells Fargo) in London and had a stint with The Sunday Times Newspaper and other media firms. She has an MBA from London Business School, an MSc in International Finance and a BA in Business Management & Economics. 

Sarata Kone

Sarata Kone

Managing Director
United Bank for Africa (UBA) Cote d’Ivoire

Sarata Kone is the Managing Director of UBA Cote d’Ivoire, which she joined in 2015. She has more that 19 years of banking and financial markets experience in the Sub-Saharan Africa region, and has a background that spans corporate, investment and commercial banking. 

She previously held various executive positions with HSBC and Citibank, including Director West Africa, Senior Vice President for Financial Institutions and Head of Financial Institutions for Africa. 

She has an MSc and a BSc in Economics from the University of Montréal, Canada

James Wainaina

James Wainaina

Group Head, Customer Experience

James Wainaina is Group Head of Customer Experience at Letshego leading on digital and micro solutions. He has 24 years of experience, primarily in sales and general management in the retail and corporate sectors. He was previously Vice President and Area Business Head, East and Southern Africa, at MasterCard, where he was responsible for the entire business delivery. Mr Wainaina has also worked for NIC Group, where he led on its launch of the direct interface between bank accounts and the M-PESA mobile wallet.

Jennifer  Blanke

Jennifer Blanke

Vice-President Agriculture, Human and Social Development
African Development Bank Group

Jennifer Blanke is Vice-President Agriculture, Human and Social Development, at the African Development Bank Group. She was previously Chief Economist at the World Economic Forum, overseeing economic research activities and projects. Dr Blanke is a member of the Canadian government’s Council of Economic Growth and holds a number of non-executive board responsibilities in the not-for-profit sector. She has written and lectured extensively on national competitiveness issues.

Dr Blanke has a Master’s in International Affairs from Columbia University, New York, and an MA and a PhD in International Economics from the Graduate Institute of International Studies, Geneva.

Olivier  Buyoya

Olivier Buyoya

Resident Representative for Guinea

Olivier Buyoya has been Resident Representative for Guinea for the International Finance Corporation (IFC) since February 2017. Prior to that, he was Regional Lead for its Trade & Commodity Finance department covering Sub-Saharan Africa.

Mr Buyoya joined IFC in 2008 as a Trade Finance Officer in the then Financial Markets Division of its Sub-Saharan Africa Department. In this role, he was instrumental in expanding IFC’s footprint in the short-term finance space across the region. He contributed to the development of its Global Trade Finance Program, significantly increasing the investment reach. He previously worked in the Corporate and Institutional Banking Department at Fortis Bank, Brussels, Belgium.

Mr Buyoya has a Masters in Finance from Reims Management School, France. 

Dare  Okoudjou

Dare Okoudjou

Founder and CEO
MFS Africa

Dare Okoudjou is the Founder and CEO of MFS Africa. He previously worked at MTN Group, where he developed its mobile payment strategy and led its implementation across the company’s operations in 21 countries throughout Africa and the Middle East. He began his career as a management consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Paris. Mr Okoudjou has an MSc in Telecom Engineering from ENST-Paris and an MBA from INSEAD. 

Momoh Kemoh  Konte

Momoh Kemoh Konte

Chairman and Commissioner
National Telecommunication Commission (NATCOM), Sierra Leone

Momoh Kemoh Konte is the Chairman and Commissioner of Sierra Leone’s National Telecommunication Commission (NATCOM). He is also the President and Chief Executive Officer of Transtech International.

Previous roles, based in the US, include Regional Distributor, Maghreb States of Tunisia, Morocco and Egypt, South Western Petroleum Corporation (SWEPCO); Lead Consultant, Justin’s Corp; Lead Consultant, RE-Logistics Incorporated; Financial Analyst, MCI World Com; Trade Consultant, Small Business Development Center, Washington, DC; and Consultant, Minority Media and Telecommunications Council, Washington, DC. He has also been Lead Consultant for the privatisation of Liberia’s and Sierra Leone’s telecommunications companies.

Mr Konte has a BA in Economics from Howard University, Washington, DC, and a Master’s in Economics from the University of Toledo, Ohio. He is studying for a a PhD at Walden University in Minnesota.

Grete  Faremo

Grete Faremo

Under-Secretary-General, United Nations (UN), and Executive Director, UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Grete Faremo joined UNOPS as Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director in August 2014.

Before this she held various senior-level positions for the government of Norway. Most recently, she was Minister of Justice and Public Security, a role she held for two years. She was Minister of Defence (2009-2011), Minister of Oil and Energy (1996), Minister of Justice (1992-1996), and Minister of Development Cooperation (1990-1992) for the Norwegian Government’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She was an elected Member of Parliament from 1993 to 1997.

Ms Faremo was the Executive Vice President of the Norwegian insurance group, Storebrand, from 1997 to 2003. From 2003 to 2008, she was Director of Law and Corporate Affairs at Microsoft Corporation’s Western European Office.

She has also sat on various advisory boards and associations, including Norwegian Peoples’ Aid, the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment, the Competence Development Fund of Southern Norway, Norsk Hydro ASA, the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and the University of Bergen.

Ms Faremo has a degree in Law, specialising in International Law, from the University of Oslo.

Mahat Mohammed  Ahmed

Mahat Mohammed Ahmed

Managing Director
Premier Bank

Mahat Mohammed Ahmed is Managing Director of Premier Bank, Somalia. He is in charge of driving the implementation of the bank’s overall strategy and the fulfilment of its mission. 

Before joining Premier Bank, Mr Ahmed was Head of Islamic Banking for Standard Chartered Bank, where he helped set up and roll out its global Islamic Banking brand Saadiq in Kenya. He was previously with Barclays Bank and Gulf African Bank.

Mr Ahmed has a BSc in Information Systems & Technology and a Global Executive MBA from the United States International University (USIU), Kenya. 

Sascha  Noé

Sascha Noé

Responsible Investment and Social Impact Manager

Sascha Noé is Responsible Investment and Social Impact Manager at Cordaid, which she joined in 2008. 

She has worked in the international development sector for 20 years. Over the past eight years, Ms Noé has specialised in responsible investment and impact investment, including conducting financial, environmental, social and governance risk analyses. She leads the execution of the social impact strategy and the development of assessment and monitoring tools to ensure that investees create positive change. She is also Investment Manager for Sierra Leone.

Ms Noé has a Master’s in Russian Studies from the University of Leiden, Netherlands.

Aliou  Maiga

Aliou Maiga

Senior Manager, Financial Institutions Group Sub-Saharan Africa

Aliou Maiga is the IFC Senior Manager, Financial Institutions Group, Sub-Saharan Africa, in charge of investment operations in the financial sector across the region. Mr Maiga has been with the IFC for more than 12 years and held several positions in Washington DC, Africa and East Asia, before his appointment to his current position in 2014. He has been instrumental in growing IFC’s FIG business in Africa and East Asia over the past five years. Mr Maiga led a major IT and change management project for the IFC for two years when he first joined the corporation before moving to the investment arm.

Prior to joining the IFC, he was IT Project Manager for the Treasury and Derivatives Groups (France and the US) at Credit Lyonnais Capital Markets for six years and a Management Consultant at Booz Allen & Hamilton (Europe) for two and a half years. 

Mr Maiga has a degree in Electrical Engineering, Electronics, Telecoms and IT from SUPELEC (France), and an MBA in General Management from the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Lausanne, Switzerland. 

Mark  Napier

Mark Napier

FSD Africa

Mark Napier is Director of Financial Sector Deepening (FSD) Africa, a not-for-profit company which aims to increase prosperity, create jobs and reduce poverty by transforming financial markets in sub-Saharan Africa and in the economies they serve.  It is funded by UK government aid to reduce poverty through financial sector development. 

Mr Napier’s early career was in investment banking in the City of London where he advised growth companies on M&A and raising capital.

From 2004-2009 he was CEO of FinMark Trust, based in Johannesburg, South Africa. He moved back to London and became an independent consultant specialising in access to finance in developing countries, mainly in Africa. He joined CDC, the UK’s development finance institution, as Director of Investment Innovation, a post he held from 2011-2012. He moved to Nairobi, Kenya, to head FSD Africa in December 2012

Mr Napier has written papers and articles on financial sector development and was Commissioning Editor for a 2010 book of case studies on financial innovation in Africa: Real Money, New Frontiers

Martin  Spicer

Martin Spicer

Director, Blended Finance

Martin Spicer is Director of Blended Finance at International Finance Corporation (IFC), where he manages a team of investment professionals responsible for co-investments originating from US$1bn of blended finance facilities, including climate, agribusiness and SME themes.  He also manages the IDA18 Private Sector Window, a US$2bn blended finance facility focused on the poorest and most fragile and violence-affected (FCS/IDA) countries.  

Mr Spicer has previously led teams responsible for investments in IFC’s Manufacturing, Agribusiness and Services business in Latin America, for its Telecommunications, Media and Technology business in Asia, Europe, Middle East & North Africa, and for its Infrastructure and Natural Resources business in southern Europe.

He has an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, with a major in Finance, an MA from the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University and a BSc from Stanford University.  

Andrea Christie  Pizziconi

Andrea Christie Pizziconi

Founder and Managing Partner
Africa Integras

Andrea Christie Pizziconi is the Founder and Managing Partner of Africa Integras, an early-risk investment company that sponsors education infrastructure public-private partnerships in select countries in Africa.  Current projects include the construction of academic and dormitory facilities at the University of Ghana and 10,000 dormitory beds at Kenyatta University in Kenya. She is also the Founder of Africa Integras’s majority investor, the Christie Company, a sustainable development company that anchors mixed-use facilities with education and other social infrastructure in the US, the Caribbean and Africa. 

Previously, Ms Pizziconi has managed development projects for educational establishments including Yale University and was an advisor or partner to leading international development and education companies such as Grosvenor Group Holdings and school organisations such as Big Picture Learning undertaking education development projects in the US and abroad. As Founding Principal of the Christie Wareck Company, she pioneered nationally recognised urban development projects that contributed to the downtown revitalisation of New Haven. 

She has written and lectured internationally, particularly on her strategies and deal structures to create affordable, commercially sustainable education public-private partnerships. 

Ms Pizziconi serves on several not-for-profit and for-profit boards including Horizons Ltd, a private medical hospital in The Gambia. She is also a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Charterholder.

She has a BA in History from Yale University and a MPhil in Land Economy from the University of Cambridge.  

Philippe  Valahu

Philippe Valahu

Chief Executive Officer
Private Infrastructure Development Group

Philippe Valahu is Chief Executive Officer of the Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG). The PIDG mobilises private sector investment to assist developing countries in providing infrastructure vital to boosting their economic growth. Mr Valahu has more than 27 years of international experience in emerging markets infrastructure project and export finance, and risk management. This covers project finance, structured export finance, guarantee products and fixed income. In 2011, he joined InfraLinx Capital as one of its European founding partners. Prior to that, he was responsible for workouts and restructurings in Depfa's Emerging Markets Fixed Income team (2009-11) and Structured Export Finance in its Infrastructure Finance Unit (2007-2009). Before joining Depfa in 2007, he spent 13 years at the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (World Bank Group) in Washington DC in the US and in Singapore, where he headed the guarantees department and was Global Head of Infrastructure. He completed Harvard University’s Business School Executive Program in 2000. He has an MBA in international business from George Washington University; a Master’s degree from the American University, and a Bachelor’s degree from George Washington University.

Sharmila  Hardi

Sharmila Hardi

Global Head, Banking, Small and Enterprise Business line and Banking on Women

Sharmila Hardi is the Global Head of Banking, Small and Medium Enterprise Business line, SME Finance Forum and the Banking on Women product at the International Finance Corporation (IFC). She leads a team of more than 50 professionals providing access to finance for SMEs in emerging markets. Ms Hardi has been with the IFC since 1992. Most recently she was the Global Head of Syndications responsible for raising US$3-$4billion annually in additional senior long-term debt from commercial banks and development finance institutions to complement IFC’s own financing. She has also advised and represented the Vice-President on all IFC’s Western Europe, Latin America, Caribbean and Africa business and stakeholder relationship issues. Prior to her appointment as a special advisor, Ms Hardi was the Principal Investment Officer and sector head of Sustainable Forestry. She has structured IFC’s investments in several complex projects in manufacturing including pre-IPO equities. She was also responsible for the assessment of loan portfolio quality, review of risk management systems and guidance on structuring in the Global Financial Markets Department.

Gerald  Tanyi

Gerald Tanyi

Manager, Legal Department

Gerald B Tanyi is Chief Counsel, Manager, at IFC, and also leads its global fragile conflict state (FCS) and portfolio management strategies. Prior to joining the World Bank Group, Dr Tanyi worked at a number of institutions including Bank of Central African States (BEAC); Swiss private bank Lombard & Odier; and Wall Street law firm Sullivan & Cromwell. He was also adjunct professor of international infrastructure finance at Georgetown University from 2001 to 2006 and has published papers in the areas of privatisation and international finance. Over the past 22 years, he has been involved in the structuring of a number of major transactions in the US, Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa.  

He has a doctorate degree from Yale University; a graduate degree from the University of Yaounde, Cameroon; and graduate diploma in Banking and Capital Markets from the Centre d'Études Juridiques Européens (University of Geneva, Switzerland). He is also admitted to the New York Bar.

Wagner  Albuquerque de Almeida

Wagner Albuquerque de Almeida

Regional Chief Investment & Credit Officer

Wagner Albuquerque de Almeida is Regional Chief Investment and Credit Officer for International Finance Corporation (IFC) based in Johannesburg, South Africa.

He is responsible for investments (eg debt, trade, mezzanine and equity) in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America. He joined IFC in 2010, having worked for almost 18 years at Deutsche Bank and ABN AMRO.

He started his professional career in Sao Paulo, Brazil, but ended up working and living in New York, Washington DC, Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Johannesburg. 

Mr Albuquerque de Almeida’s main expertise is in risk management, particularly credit risk in emerging markets, and investment banking and retail business.

Marcos  Brujis

Marcos Brujis


Marcos Brujis is the newly announced CEO of the IFC Asset Management Company and Vice President of IFC AMC Services with effect 1 November 2017. Prior to that, he was Global Industry Director, Financial Institutions Group, at IFC. He oversees IFC’s strategy, investments and operation’s portfolio in financial markets around the world. IFC’s investments in the financial sector represent about 40% of its global operations and aim to promote access to finance for micro, small and medium enterprises. Before joining IFC, Mr Brujis was the Executive Director of Corporate and Institutional Banking at HSBC Argentina. In 1994, he was appointed Vice Chairman of the Board of The Argentina Private Development Trust (APDT). He was a board member, Founder and key fundraiser of the Peru Privatization Fund (PPF), a US$200m fund set up in 1995 in which IFC participated. Mr Brujis has an MBA from McGill University, Canada.


Agenda - 13th Sep

  • 3:00pm
    Registration and networking
  • 3:30pm
    Chair’s opening remarks

    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

    Marcos Brujis, VP and CEO, AMC, IFC

  • 3:50pm
    Ministerial opening keynote

    His Excellency Daniel Kablan Duncan, Vice President,Government of Côte d'Ivoire

  • 4:10pm
    Presentation: Geopolitical and economic outlook for Africa
    • What are the economic risks and opportunities in Africa from 2018 and beyond?
    • How will new US foreign policy impact on geopolitical challenges across Africa?
    • How do Africa’s 17 fragile or conflict affected states fit into the wider African economy?
    • What is the geopolitical outlook for Africa’s Conflict Affected States? (CASA)
    • Which other African states risk being defined as ‘fragile’?  

    Jean-Pierre Lacombe, Director, Global Macroeconomics, Market and Portfolio Research, IFC 

  • 4:30pm
    Presentation and interview: IFC Creating Markets Strategy

    Martin Spicer, Director, Blended Finance, IFC


    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 5:00pm
    Panel discussion: Redefining fragility in the African context


    • What does fragility mean in the African context?
    • How do you create a strategy for operating in a country impacted by natural disasters or epidemics?
    • How do you create a strategy for investing in countries suffering weak governance and conflict?
    • How do you define risk in a fragile and conflicted affected context?
    • How do you ensure that Africa’s economic growth positively affects the lives of all citizens in a country going through post-conflict rebound?
    • How do you deliver on corporate governance requirements in a fragile state?
    • How do you assess post-disaster needs?



    Grete Faremo, Under-Secretary-General, United Nations (UN) and Executive Director, UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

    Mark Napier, Director, FSD Africa

    Philip Andrew Wabulya, Executive Director Operations, Bank of Uganda


    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 5:50pm
    Chair’s closing remarks

    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 6:00pm
    Drinks reception

Agenda - 14th Sep

  • 8:00am
  • 9:00am
    Chair’s opening remarks

    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 9:10am
    Opening keynote interview: The view from a bank CEO
    • What is the role of the banking sector in moving countries from fragility?
    • What are the major trends and challenges for banks operating in fragile states?
    • How do you manage risk and comply with international standards in a fragile market?
    • How are traditional banks promoting financial inclusion in fragile and conflict-affected states?

    Ben Kruger, CEO, Standard Bank Group

    Interviewed by:

    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 9:30am
    Keynote address: The EU approach to fragile states

    Jean-François Valette, Ambassador and Head, EU delegation in Côte d'Ivoire

  • 9:50am
    Fireside chat: Rebuilding after ebola
    • What was the impact of ebola on Guinea and the wider West Africa region?
    • How did the international community support countries during the ebola crisis?
    • What is the role of the private sector in the recovery process? How has it encouraged a rebound, and what challenges still need to be addressed?
    • What results have been seen so far in Guinea and the wider region? 


    Olivier Buyoya, Resident Representative for Guinea, IFC


    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 10:10am
    Panel discussion: Lessons learned in Africa
    • Trade not aid – what is the role of the private sector in rebuilding fragile and conflict-affected states?
    • What can we learn from successes in other fragile and conflict-affected regions?
    • How do you develop policies that benefit citizens as well as investors?
    • How do you encourage risk taking and promote economic growth in fragile and conflict-affected states?
    • How do you ensure that ESG requirements are met in a fragile country?
    • How do you develop a conflict sensitive approach to development?


    Jennifer Blanke, Vice President, Agriculture, Human and Social Development, African Development Bank Group

    Aliou Maiga, Regional Industry Head, Financial Institutions Group, Sub-Saharan Africa, IFC 

    Andrea Pizziconi, Founder andManaging Partner, Africa Integras

    Dadié Tayoraud, Chief Operating Officer, Injaro Investments


    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times


  • 11:00am
    Networking break
  • 11:30am
    Investor insight: Learning from experience

    • What can the banking and finance sector learn from corporates that have invested in a fragile state?
    • How do you manage risk to staff, assets, brand and profit in a fragile state?
    • What is the role of technology in risk management?
    • How do you deliver on corporate governance requirements in a fragile and conflict-affected state?
    • From fragility to resilience: How do you achieve the end goal in project management?
    • How can governments and the private sector work together to benefit some of the most deprived people in the world?
    • How do you turn disaster into an opportunity?
    • How do you set and uphold standards in change management projects?
    • How do you keep stakeholders and existing customers on board in a risky location?

    Mossadeck Bally, Founder and CEO, Azalai Group

    Interviewed by:

    Joy Macknight, Deputy Editor, The Banker

  • 11:50am
    Panel discussion: Enabling growth with mobile and digital technology
    • Mobile and the microfinance revolution: what are the wider implications and opportunities?
    • Connecting the unconnected: what are the connectivity barriers in Africa’s fragile states?
    • How do you enable consumers and businesses to send, spend and receive money? What payments and products are best suited for Africa’s fragile nations?
    • What is the role of new technology in providing opportunities to the poorest in Africa?
    • How do you develop secure, flexible mobile financial platforms?
    • How do you create KYC policies that really work and meet international requirements?
    • How do you enable cross-border transactions?
    • How do you use mobile and digital technology to deliver benefits to refugees?
    • What ESG considerations should you make when it comes to delivering financial products to some of Africa’s poorest communities?
    • How do you manage risks associated with mobile and digital technology?

    Sarata Kone, Managing Director, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Cote d’Ivoire

    Momoh Kemoh Konte, Chairman and Commissioner, National Telecommunications Commission (NATCOM), Sierra Leone

    Dare Okoudjou, CEO, MFS Africa

    James Wainaina, Group Head, Customer Experience, Letshego


    Joy Macknight, Deputy Editor, The Banker

  • 12:40pm
    Interview: Empowering women: the role of gender financing in fragile states
    • What is the role of gender financing in state building?
    • What are the key issues, challenges and opportunities associated with gender financing?
    • How can the financial sector play a role in promoting gender equality and female empowerment?
    • How do you measure the success of a gender financing programme?                                   

    Sharmila Hardi, Global Head, Banking, Small and Enterprise Business line and Banking on Women, IFC

    Sarata Kone, Managing Director, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Cote d’Ivoire


    Joy Macknight, Deputy Editor, The Banker

  • 1:00pm
    Networking lunch

  • 2:10pm
    Interview: Innovation and entrepreneurship
    • How can you support innovation at a local level through international investment?
    • How can digital finance be used to promote women entrepreneurs?
    • What factors do you need to consider when creating a project?
    • How can owners and investors protect their profits from future fragile fluctuations and changes in government regulations?
    • How do you address risk at a local level?

    Arnaud Ventura, Founder and CEO, Microcred Group

    Interviewed by:

    Gerald Tanyi, Manager, Legal Department, IFC

  • 2:30pm
    Panel discussion: Trade finance – Are banks becoming unbanked?
    • What more can be done to encourage confirming banks to maintain their corresponding banking networks?
    • Can multilateral development banks further increase their support for trade facilitation programmes?
    • What kind of additional trade facilitation programme do fragile economies need? eg supply chain, structured trade?
    • How can we grow international banking relationships that start with trade finance to benefit companies and the broader economy?


    Mahat Mohammed Ahmed, Managing Director, Premier Bank

    Olivier Buyoya, Resident Representative for Guinea, IFC

    Nisrin Hala, Executive Director, Head of Africa Desk, Global Trade Finance Department, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Europe


    Alain Nounke, Portfolio Manager for Financial Institutions in Africa, IFC

  • 3:20pm
    Networking break

  • 3:50pm
    Fireside chat: Banking on agricultural finance
    • What is the profile of agricultural production in Africa?
    • How do you cultivate the right environment for investment and growth within the sector?
    • How do you de-risk agriculture in Africa?
    • What is the role of insurance in de-risking and building resilience?

        Mohamed Béavogui, Director-General, African Risk Capacity and Assistant Secretary General, United Nations


      John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 4:10pm
    Panel discussion: Risk models and financial tools
    • What is the role of financial sector development in addressing fragility?
    • What are the impact/outcomes from development partners’ interventions in supporting financial sector development in African countries facing fragile situations?
    • What evidence is available that these interventions have helped reduce fragility?
    • How do you apply risk modelling techniques and technology tools for improved outcomes?
    • How do you deploy innovative finance instruments to help mitigate risks?
    • What financing models should you adopt across the life-cycle of a project?
    • How do you model liquidity risk for fragile countries?
    • What is the role of Government and credit guarantee schedules in supporting private enterprises in fragile economies? 

    Wagner Albuquerque de Almeida, Regional Chief Investment & Credit Officer, IFC 

    Sascha Noe, Responsible Investment and Social Impact Manager, Cordaid 

    Philippe Valahu, Chief Executive Officer, Private Infrastructure Development Group


    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 5:00pm
    Closing keynote interview: A central banker’s perspective of risk in Africa
    • What challenges do central banks in Africa face and how can you address them?
    • What are the barriers to financial sector development in fragile situations? How do central bankers develop policies that address these challenges and take into account risks?
    • What is the role of central banks in encouraging the private sector? And how do they help the private sector reduce risk?
    • How do central banks manage risks while promoting new technologies and financial services models?


    Ibrahim Stevens, Deputy Governor, Bank of Sierra Leone

    Interviewed by:

    Joy Macknight, Deputy Editor, The Banker

  • 5:20pm
    Chair’s closing remarks

    John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times

    Marcos Brujis, VP and CEO, AMC, IFC

  • 5:30pm
    Conference close


Sofitel Abidjan Hôtel Ivoire
Boulevard Hassan II 08 Bp 01 Abidjan 08

Côte d'Ivoire




Registration does not automatically guarantee a hotel room booking. Delegates are responsible for making their own hotel reservations. For reservations at the Sofitel Abidjan Hôtel Ivoire, contact Morel KOFFI (, referencing the conference in your request.


Visitors to Ivory Coast must obtain a visa from one of the Ivorian diplomatic missions unless they come from one of the visa exempt countries. As visa application processes and processing times vary from country to country, please ensure that you liaise with your local Abidjan Embassy for more details.

Please find the link for e-visa for Cote d’Ivoire here. Please note, passport details will be required for a personalized letter of invitation for visa application.

If you have any questions on the VISA process, please contact:

Dominique Yao
Tel : + 225 22400447
Immeuble Banque Mondiale, Angles rues Jacques Aka & Booker Washington, 01 BP 1850 Abidjan 01


Presented by (1)

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. The FT has a record paying readership of one million, three-quarters of which are digital subscriptions. It is part of Nikkei Inc., which provides a broad range of information, news and services for the global business community.

In partnership with (1)

IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In fiscal year 2018, we delivered more than $23 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit


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VISA Enquiries
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Speaking Opportunities
Financial Times
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