EOI – Côte d’Ivoire - Senior Advisor to support execution of financial inclusion division – OFSD – 09 2015
| Published September 14, 2015
EXPRESSION OF INTEREST
Brief Description of the assignment: Senior Advisor to Support Execution of Financial Inclusion Division.
Department making the request: Financial Sector Development Department (OFSD) of the
African Development Bank (“the Bank”)
Place of assignment: Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire
Period of assignment: October 2015 to October 2016
Expected start date of the assignment: 01 October 2015
Last date for expressing interest: 21 September 2015
Expression of interest to be submitted to: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com Any
Annex 1: TERMS OF REFERENCE (TOR)
Senior Advisor - Financial Inclusion Division
The Ten Year Strategy of the African Development Bank links entrepreneurship, investment and
economic growth with the Bank’s goal of poverty alleviation and sustainable growth and
recognizes that a sound and inclusive financial system is essential for these linkages to work. The
Financial Sector Development Policy and Strategy, which will be before the Board in October, has
two primary objectives: increased access to financial services and increased private sector credit
to key development segments and sectors. With respect to access, the strategy prioritizes digital
solutions as the most promising approach to rapidly increasing financial inclusion. Financial
inclusion in the Strategy encompasses all initiatives seeking to make formal financial services
available, accessible and affordable to all segments of the population which requires: (1) regulation
and supervision that balance IT-enabled innovation, enhanced competition through participation
of business agents and facilitators, and protection of customers for a cheaper but secured solution
to financial exclusion; (2) win-win partnerships among all stakeholders; and (3) a technically inter-
operable platform for all kinds of mobile payment products and their cross-border services; and
(4) the technical and financial resources that support the various members of the mobile payments
ecosystem to scale up their product and service offerings.
Financial Inclusion in most African countries is moving far too slowly for its potential
development impact to be realized. Formal financial institutions, payment networks and even
mobile service providers need to be supplemented by digital platforms and solutions that are
cheap, simple, scalable and interoperable among them. Financial inclusion has in the last decade
become an important topic in international development circles and to lesser extent in domestic
retail banking regulation in many countries, including the regulation of retail payment systems.
Too often the discussion surrounding inclusion essentially sees the failure to provide transaction
services to largely excluded segments as a market failure. As such, there is a regulatory
temptation to simply compel banks and payment providers to extend services at very low prices,
for example, capping fees on current accounts or debit card usage. AfDB suggests that instead of
emphasizing access to formal financial institutions and products inclusion efforts, associated
metrics ought to focus on the nature of the services themselves and their core function in people's
financial and social lives. This is ultimately what matters. Whether the traditional banking and
payment systems are the optimal means of providing core services is an entirely different
question. Essentially, people, especially poor people, should be able to, among other things:
Save and accumulate when they have income
Bridge gaps in income
Pool resources to finance expenditures
Transmit financial value between themselves and those they purchase goods and services
Pool and share resources to sustain accidents and hazards of life
It is obvious that these basic functions provide substantial benefits to those with access to them.
And, in fact, over history and across cultures, most of these activities have been carried out
through institutions and business models (e.g. postal banks, building societies, mutual and civic
savings banks, coops etc.) other than conventional commercial banks. Indeed, commercial banks
in developed countries have only addressed the consumer mass market over the last few decades.
Low returns when balanced against risk considerations can hinder the implementation of mobile
payment platforms and projects across Africa. When essential financial infrastructure and
customer affordability are taken into account, the public and private sector is often deterred from
investing in financial inclusion due to the high level of perceived risks.
This is even more of an issue in Africa where the higher costs and longer delays of doing business
increase the risks of investing as compared to other regions. Accurate risk evaluations, mitigation,
and forming the right partnerships with others who share a common vision of extending financial
inclusion to the unbanked sector in Africa is therefore critical for mobilising private capital to
invest in the creation of a viable and robust financial inclusion ecosystem in Africa. Engaging
with financial sector regulators and other relevant stakeholders in the continent is also important
to ensuring a smooth functioning in-country and cross border money transfer and mobile payments
across Africa. Understanding and mitigating against the risks involved in the development of an
effective payments solutions to deepen financial inclusion is critical to this effort.
Against the background of a need for deepening financial inclusion in Africa, the African
Development Bank (AfDB) wishes to recruit a Senior consultant in the Financial Sector
Department (OFSD) to assist the Bank in addressing its need to increase and deepen financial
inclusion in Africa, through investments in new technology and entrepreneurs and in mitigating
against the risks identified that may negatively impact carrying out the OFSD business plan as it
relates to deepening of financial inclusion in Africa.
1. Scope of Work/ Objectives
The African Development Bank has recently set up the Financial Sector Development Department.
The Financial Sector Development Policy and Strategy, which will be considered by the Board in
October 2015, has two primary objectives: increased access to financial services and increased
private sector credit to key development segments and sectors. With respect to access, the strategy
prioritizes digital solutions as the most promising approach to rapidly increasing financial
inclusion. The attached Financial Sector Development Policy and Strategy, forms an integral part
of the terms of reference for the OFSD Division.
The African Development Bank (AFDB) wishes to engage a senior consultant in the OSFD to
assist in initiatives that will catalyse the deepening of financial inclusion in Africa, including
development of new mechanism to increase access to financial services for the bottom of the
pyramid including risk mitigation strategies that will ensure the smooth implementation of any
This Senior Advisor’s contract will have an explicit pipeline, country dialogue and
eventually transactional objective - to define, originate and support the execution of new
initiatives, promote financial inclusion in African countries starting with a few selected
countries in close collaboration with Regional Member Countries’ (RMCs) clients and
policy stakeholders. The objective is for these innovative public market exercises not only
to take full advantage of financial products and services developed by the Bank Group but
to demonstrate innovation in providing efficient long-term financing alternatives for
strategic investments relevant for economic transformation.
The Senior Advisor shall perform highly specialized functions requiring minimum
supervision and is expected to work with the Bank’s Financial Inclusion team to undertake
a full range of duties related to the analysis, development, structuring, management and
implementation of lending and non-lending activities to be performed by OFSD – Financial
Inclusion Division to Regional Member Countries (RMCs).
The strategic objectives at country level are:
i) Achieve improved policy, legal and regulatory environment
ii) Achieve improved financial sector infrastructure
iii) More and better financial services for enterprises
iv) More and better financial services for households and individuals
Among other assignments, the Consultant will work on the following thematic areas:
Preparation and appraisal missions of financial Inclusion programs to develop projects in Africa;
Work related to Financial Inclusion Divisions’ Business Development;
Alignment of the above two functions with the Bank Policies and Strategies, namely;
Bank’s long term – Ten-Year Strategy (TYS)
Country Strategy Papers (CSPs)
Joint Assistant Strategy (JAS);
The Senior Advisor will initially focus on;
i) Operational Duties:
Provide expert advice and support to the team in the Financial Inclusion Division to Originate and
manage transactions. This involves, as part of a team, undertaking country dialogue missions,
scoping and market assessment exercise, project identification and appraisal missions of both
lending and non-lending programs. Undertaking the preliminary evaluation of project proposals to
assess their feasibility for the Bank. This involves supporting the team that conducts the initial
screening of project applications, carrying out of desk reviews, preparing preliminary evaluation
notes for presentation to the Departmental Management Team; and the preparation of project
appraisal reports for presentation to Management, the various Bank Review Committees and
finally to the Board of Directors.
Conduct country assessment exercises
Work with the OFSD.2 team to coordinate with donors active in the sector
Support the team in developing concept note for resource mobilization from donors.
Evaluate new transactions, structure, negotiate, and, most importantly, close the transactions.
Develop innovative and appropriate financial structures for complex transactions.
Coordinate closely with social environmental, and technical assistance colleagues in order to add
value to our clients’ businesses, find pragmatic solutions to the specific sector challenges, and
achieve sustainable development impact.
Assist in integrity due diligence for potential clients.
Advising on developing new financial inclusion products.
Develop a strong pipeline of good quality investment projects for the Financial Inclusion Division.
ii) Special Initiatives
Project origination in several target countries to initiate dialogue with target
governments to obtain buy-in to support the financial inclusion ecosystem.
Needs Definition: this includes market research and an in-depth market study to evaluate
current gaps in the financial services ecosystem that hinder financial inclusion and to identify
opportunities to scale-up financial inclusion.
Market Research is then presented to country stake holders who will identify Key focus areas
to invest to further financial inclusion.
Based on this prioritized focus areas identified by the country stakeholders, a Country-
specific Ecosystem Design is completed. This will serve as a map or “blueprint” to follow to
ensure that all of the requirements are in place to realize the opportunities in financial
inclusion identified by the local stakeholders. This will include the map of the needed
ecosystem and a detailed description of each required role in the ecosystem, the related
business model as well as technical and infrastructure requirements.
A Country Funding Package: Funding recommendations will be made for entities identified as key
ecosystem players amongst a range of funding options: equity, debt, technical assistance or
grants. Overall, these funding recommendations will be made in concert with the explicit intent
of “curating the expected outcome” so they ensure system-wide transformation (scale).
This approach is entirely new but addresses a well-defined need to approach financial inclusion in
a more holistic way. It starts with a clear definition of the problem, identifies a solution and then
targets funding against that solution. This approach aims at the following objectives:
o An ecosystem “blue print” to scale-up products and services for the underserved
aligned with key stakeholders strategic areas of interest and core competencies;
o Identification of a high potential portfolio of companies whose participation in the
financial services ecosystem can create a positive, “chain reaction” that will
accelerate market evolution;
o Increase in the access to full suite of financial services, especially amongst the
previously underserved and low income populations.
o Increase in efficiency and decrease in cost to deliver government and other types of
payments and financial services; and ultimately
o Market- level transformation in financial inclusion that leads to inclusive growth.
Outputs and deliverables
Progress Reports are expected on a monthly basis on the following:
i) Project Diagnostic which will cover the following:
o Summary assessment of institutions to be associated with execution of the
o Current state of financial inclusion in the country
o The regulatory framework and polices that will promote financial inclusion
including digital financial services.
o Project concept note indicating possible intervention by the Bank
ii) Progress reports on transaction preparation;
2- Qualifications and Experience
The qualifications required for this assignment are the following:
i. Minimum MA/M.Sc. degree in Finance, Business Administration, Economics or a closely
ii. Minimum of 20 years post qualification experience in the field of financial markets and/or
banking specifically in transactions in structured finance.
iii. Strong experience in emerging markets or in developing country context in both public and
private sector lending and investing within the Africa Region in particular.
iv. Specific familiarity with forming and maintaining partnerships with Governments, Donors,
NGO, financial institutions, private sector support institutions and private sector investors
would be an added advantage.
v. Strong writing, documentation, and presentation skills, in one or more of the Bank’s
vi. Experience in capacity building is desirable and would be an added advantage.
4. Duration of Assignment
This assignment will be for an initial period of twelve (12) months deliverable in accordance with
the schedules and time limits established under the contract.