Financial Markets International, Inc. (FMI)

FINANCIAL INCLUSION

Increasing financial access and understanding to reduce poverty and expand prosperity

Financial inclusion is essential to promoting equitable economic growth. FMI’s financial inclusion work aims to bring individuals and businesses into the formal financial sector by expanding access to useful and affordable financial products and services that meet local needs and are delivered in a responsible and sustainable way. In doing so, FMI empowers households and firms to protect themselves against risks, make long-term investments, and build long-term financial security. FMI’s experience includes several training and outreach programs designed specifically for women, minorities, youths, and vulnerable groups, who are particularly disadvantaged by low levels of financial inclusion. Over the last decade, FMI has emerged as a leader in donor-funded financial literacy, consumer protection, and entrepreneurial development programs, designing a proprietary curriculum based on international best practices. FMI has also developed several financial technology and digital finance solutions that can reach new client segments that were previously excluded from the formal financial system in a cost-effective and responsive manner.

FEATURED WORK

Empowering Women’s Economic Engagement in Ukraine

FMI’s “Go Women” Program was awarded by the USAID/Washington Women’s Leadership Fund under a global competition. FMI helped women in Ukraine develop their knowledge in financial literacy, business, and entrepreneurial skills, reduce impediments to women’s access to financial services, and empower women to assume greater leadership roles in business, civil society, and public service. Go Women placed a particular focus on groups often referred to as “unbankable,” including young entrepreneurs, women business owners with no collateral, widowed women, mothers of many children, single mothers, and those living in rural areas.

Expanding Financial Literacy in Ukraine

FMI designed and implemented one of USAID’s first major financial literacy and consumer protection initiatives, which was developed to reinforce broader financial sector development efforts. FMI’s successes in Ukraine included: conducting the first national financial literacy survey, launching the first financial literacy curriculum for high school students, creating a sustainable train-the-trainers program for school teachers, organizing dozens of public awareness events, supporting the development of a National Financial Literacy Strategy and Website, and assisting the National Bank of Ukraine to become a member of the OECD’s International Network on Financial Education.

Developing Innovations in Financial Technology

FMI is not a technology firm by trade, but has developed several groundbreaking fintech tools and systems that have increased transparency and financial inclusion. This includes: Financial Access Bridge, a credit evaluation tool used to train banks and SMEs on access to finance and creditworthiness; ESCRIN, the first digital information disclosure system for securities exchanges in Eastern Europe, which was awarded the USAID Pioneers Prize; the KCGF Operating System: a proprietary credit management and loan guarantee application; and the Ukraine Financial Literacy Portal, an interactive web portal focused on financial literacy and consumer protection.