Who we Are

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MFR is a global rating agency specialized in inclusive finance.

MFR aims at benefiting the base of the pyramid in a sustainable manner. To do so, MFR provides independent and qualified services that improve the sustainability of the financial service providers, the focus on clients, and the protection of investors’ funds and goals. MFR clients are mainly financial service providers (mostly in: micro, SME, digital finance), investors and regulators, working to achieve the financial inclusion of the excluded and underserved.

Created in 2000 within the mother company MicroFinanza Srl, MFR was spun off as an independent company in 2006.

Headquartered in Italy, MFR operates through a network of regional offices (Ecuador, Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic), country offices (Bolivia, Peru), and antennas (Mexico, the Philippines) across 4 continents, boasting a vast geographical coverage (the largest among specialized rating agencies). Visit our regional pages to learn more.

Vision

Our vision is to contribute to a stronger and more transparent inclusive finance industry while being at the forefront of the most innovative trends with the ultimate goal to benefit the base of the pyramid.

Mission

Our mission is to provide the inclusive finance industry worldwide with independent ratings, certifications and high quality information services, aiming at enhancing transparency, facilitating investments and promoting professionalism and responsible practices.

As of February 2018, MFR has conducted more than 2,000 assignments in 106 countries worldwide.

 

15 years of proven global recognition

MFR was the first specialized rating agency to be licensed by a Regulatory and Supervisory Authority to carry out mandatory ratings and it is the only one to have more than one license:

  • since 2007 in Ecuador
  • since 2014 in Bolivia

Over time, MFR has been accredited by:

  • 2 global rating funds (Rating Fund I, IADB-CGAP; Rating Initiative, ADA), as rater;
  • Regional and local funds (Latin America RF II, Moroccan APP), as rater; and initiatives (EIB’s “Jasmine” and “EaSI TA” Programs, REGMIFA, etc.), as rater, assessor and auditor;
  • Several self-regulated schemes developed by the industry (including: Smart Campaign Certification, SPI4, Truelift Assessment, IPA’s PPI Certification, European Code of Good Conduct, GSMA Mobile Money Certification), as certifier;
  • MFR is a recognized credit rater by the hedging facility MFX.

 

Active partner of industry initiatives:

  • Board member of the Social Performance Task Force (2015-2018) and African Microfinance Transparency (2008-2013).
  • Sitting in the Certification Body Committee of Smart Campaign and in CERISE’s SPI4 Steering Committee for SPIwapp.
  • Scheme operator for Truelift since 2018.
  • Trusted partner to develop methodologies and conduct industry studies (SPTF and e-MFP: Investor guidelines on outcome management, 2016; Environmental and Social performance in SME finance, 2018).
  • In 2017 MFR became signatory of the UNPRI (Principles of Responsible Investment) Statement on ESG in Credit Rating, together with all the main global mainstream Rating Agencies and first among the specialized RAs.

MFR is licensed by

Ecuador local regulator
Credit Rating of regulated financial institutions (FIs)
since 2017

Bolivia local regulator
Credit Rating, Social Rating and Issue Rating of regulated FIs specialized in microfinance
since 2014

MFR is registered with

Philippines local regulator
Microfinance Institutions Rating Agency (MIRA)

MFR is accredited by

Smart Campaign
Client Protection Certification
since 2012
Truelift
Truelift Assessment
since 2012
IPA
PPI Certification 2013-2018*
*currently discontinued
Cerise
SPI4 and SPI4 Alinus audits
since 2015
European Commission
European Code of Good Conduct since 2015
GSMA
GSMA Mobile Money Certification since 2017

MFR is signatory of

UNPRI
Principles of Responsible Investment Statement on ESG in Credit Rating since 2017

 

 

MFR’s track record comprises partnerships with a variety of industry stakeholders, including private MIVs, DFIs and donors, holdings, specialized hedging facilities:

 

Read through MFR’s Code of Ethics.

 

Milestones 2015-2018:


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