Financial Inclusion Banana Skins 2016

Held on September 19 2016


  • David Lascelles (Senior Fellow, CSFI)

  • Deborah Drake (Vice President, Investing, Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion)

  • Philip Brown (Managing Director, Risk, Citi)

  • Mike Warmington (Director, Microfinance Partnerships, One Acre Fund) 

  • Richard Leftley (CEO, MicroEnsure Holdings)

  • Nish Kotecha (President & Founder, Geosansar)




Financial inclusion has become a big cause across the globe; many are the financial institutions which now support it citing both philanthropic and business reasons. And who can doubt them given that, by the World Bank’s estimates, there are at least 2bn people worldwide who do not have access to basic banking, insurance and investment services. What an opportunity to do good and create business at the same time.

But there’s another side. This is a risky business. Many of the markets where financial exclusion reins are untested, the consumers lack financial sophistication, regulation may be unfriendly, and the technology may not always deliver what it says on the tin.

The CSFI has just conducted - with the support of Citi and the Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion - a survey of these risks using its tried and tested Banana Skins methodology. The result is Financial Inclusion Banana Skins 2016 (you can download a copy of the survey here). This round table will consider its findings.

Leading the discussion will be:

  • David Lascelles, the CSFI’s Senior Fellow who edited the report;

  • Deborah Drake, Vice President, Investing in inclusive finance, at the Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion; and

  • Philip Brown, Managing Director, Risk, at Citi Inclusive Finance.

There will also be a discussion panel including Mike Warmington, director, Microfinance Partnerships at One Acre Fund, Richard Leftley, CEO of MicroEnsure Holdings, and Nish Kotecha, president and founder of Geosansar.

This will be an excellent opportunity to hear a hard-nosed discussion about the prospects for financial inclusion which takes account of the business case as well as the philanthropic.