24-25 May | Mumbai, India

2023 Making Finance Work for Women Summit

Join financial inclusion leaders from around the globe to accelerate her economy.

What to Expect

Powering Growth in Uncertain Times

This year’s Summit will bring together, in-person again, financial service providers, investors, donors, policymakers, and fintech players to explore themes such as gender lens investing, deepening digital engagement, and the importance of leadership & diversity. In addition, Women’s World Banking is hosting its Fourth Fintech Innovation Challenge, designed to identify innovations that target unbanked and underserved women.

Want to sponsor the Summit and become a Partner? Learn more.

Official Summit Agenda

Summit Day 1

24 May

Today’s Reality and What it Means for Inclusive Growth

Women’s financial strength is critical for global economic resilience. Within global instability and uncertain economic climates lies opportunities and learnings to build more inclusive and relevant financial systems. Together, we will investigate why women’s financial power is vital to economic resilience and, ultimately, recovery and what we can do as a community to meet and invest in women where they are. 

If you’re a registered attendee, please check the Event app for the latest agenda updates.

9.00-10.00 | Registration Opens, Light Breakfast, Coffee, and Networking

10:00-10:15 | Welcome Remarks

  • Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President & CEO, Women’s World Banking
  • Janet Truncale, Vice Chair and Regional Managing Partner, EY and Women’s World Banking Board Chair
  • Kalpana Ajayan, Regional Head, South Asia, Women’s World Banking

10:15-11:30 | Mitigating Drags on Growth through Financial Inclusion | Mainstage

By exploring the realities of three key challenges through the lens of how they affect women uniquely – climate change, the macroeconomic environment (inflationary environments, interest rate volatility, recession, etc.), and women’s labor force participation – we’ll set the stage for inspiring, inclusive solutions.

  • Ratna Sahay, Senior Fellow, National Council of Applied Economic Research in Delhi (Moderator)
  • Taimur Baig, Managing Director and Chief Economist Group Research, DBS Bank
  • Stephanie Copus Campbell, Ambassador for Gender Equality, Australia
  • Hadi Riachi, CEO, Swiss Re India Branch

11:30-11:50 | Coffee and Networking Break

11:50-13:00 | Addressing Growth through Policy and Regulation | Mainstage

Innovation and policy aren’t typically thought of together. This plenary will examine the evolving role policymakers play in creating an environment for inclusive growth. From innovation hubs to collaborations between unlikely partners, the panelists will share their approaches to women’s financial inclusion.

  • Karen Miller, Interim Head of Global Marketing & Communications, Women’s World Banking (Moderator)
  • Christopher Calabia, Senior Advisor, Alliance for Innovative Regulation
  • Rajesh Bansal, CEO, Reserve Bank Innovation Hub (RBIH)
  • Soraya M. Hakuziyaremye, Deputy Governor, National Bank of Rwanda

13:00 –14:00 | Lunch

13:20-13:50 | Lunch & Learn: Another Crisis to Conquer – Finance for Displaced Women 

There are of course many other challenges facing our global community and dampening women’s financial resilience, but we often lack data and insights to influence sustainable solutions. As a subset of the 20,000 women Women’s World Banking has spoken to understand their lives and financial needs, nearly 1,000 were from Ukraine. Women’s World Banking spoke with them to understand the financial needs of women amidst a migrant crisis. This session will present those findings and couch them in a global context – what financial solutions and infrastructure need to be in place to ensure the financial resilience of women facing tragedy like those from Ukraine, Yemen, Syria, …? Although these crises may continue, the financial infrastructure to support women can be solved.

  • Sonja Kelly, Global Vice President, Research & Advocacy, Women’s World Banking

14:00-14:20 | Afternoon Opening Remarks – Inclusive by Design | Mainstage

  • Harsha Rodrigues, Executive Vice President, Regional Client Services, Women’s World Banking

14:25-16:00 | Design That Delivers Breakout Sessions

There’s no engagement with products and services without relevancy – whether in technology, product design, onboarding, or marketing. In this session, we will explore financial services that are relevant to women (and men), how to replicate and scale solutions, and methodologies that maximize engagement for women’s economic empowerment.

Breakout 1: Give Her Credit Gameshow: Lending Approaches that Expand Access | Mainstage

This specific session will examine viable approaches to lending from around the world that expand access to credit for women who are traditionally excluded through a fun and interactive gameshow setup.

  • Pallavi Madhok, VP, Advisory Services, South Asia, Women’s World Banking (Moderator)
  • Abiodun Olubitan, Group Head – W Initiative, Access Bank
  • Fadi Amireh, CEO, Sanadcom
  • Hugues Bonshe, CEO, Baobab
  • Prakash Kumar, Chief General Manager, SIDBI
  • Hardika Shah, Founder & CEO, Kinara Capital

Breakout 2: Women-Centered Design for Commercial Viability Workshop | Gateway

Enabling women to gain better access to finance could unlock $330 billion in annual global revenue. This session will showcase financial services providers around the world who are meeting the needs of their women customers with commercially viable solutions and debate how women’s financial inclusion paves the way for what comes next – scale and sustainability.  

  • Ade Ashaye, Regional Head, Africa, Women’s World Banking (Moderator)
  • Agustina Samara, Chief of People and Corporate Strategy, DANA
  • Adekunle Alarapon, Head, Retail Segments, WEMA Bank
  • Elizabeth Gathai, Director of Digitization and Automation, Equity Holdings

Breakout 3: Moving from Digital & Financial Literacy to Digital & Financial Capability Workshop | Ballroom

Despite limited evidence to support financial literacy, policymakers, financial service providers, and civil society organizations still predominantly focus on literacy programs. However, it is time to shift mindset and action to capability vs literacy in the rapidly changing digital world.

  • Antonique Koning, Global Gender Lead, CGAP (Moderator)
  • Manu Rajan, Division CEO, Wing
  • Marina Dimova, Director, Global Head of Financial Industry & Network Advocacy, Women’s World Banking
  • Arati Deo, Engineering Director, Google Pay

16:00-16:30 | Tea and Coffee Networking Break

16:30-17:30 | Working Together to Accelerate Women’s Digital Financial Inclusion | Mainstage

As the world continues to grapple with COVID-19, growing inequalities, and stagnant economies, we must ensure that women are not left behind, especially women-owned MSMEs – major drivers of economic growth. Our individual actions – while critical – are no longer sufficient to close the gender gap in digital financial inclusion. This session will bring together both global and local experts, demonstrating the power of shared insights and platforms across borders.

  • Yashmin Fernandes, Director, Women’s Digital Financial Inclusion Advocacy Hub, Women’s World Banking (Moderator)
  • Deon Woods Bell, Senior Advisor, Global Policy, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Nigest Haile, Founder & Executive Director, CAWEE
  • Theopista Ntale Sekitto, Country Director, New Faces New Voices, Graca Machel Trust
  • Anisa Pratita Kirana Mantovani, Head of Public Policy & Government Relations, E-commerce Association (idEA), Indonesia

17:30-17:45 | Closing Remarks | Mainstage

  • Christina “CJ” Juhasz, CIO & Managing Partner, Women’s World Banking Asset Management
  • Amarjeet Sinha, Former Advisor to the Prime Minister and former Secretary of the Ministry of Rural Development

19:00-21:00 | Cocktail Reception

Summit Day 2

25 May

Investing in Women’s Financial Power

From business profitability and increased customer lifetime value to advancing women in leadership, when institutions put women at the center of their business and/or investing strategies, positive outcomes follow for all. Day two will highlight how to unshackle women’s financial power via gender lens investing, women-centered fintech business models and solutions, and gender-intentional organizations.

If you’re a registered attendee, please check the Event app for the latest agenda updates.

8.30-9.00 | Registration Opens, Light Breakfast, Coffee, and Networking

9.00-9.15 | Opening Remarks | Mainstage

  • Tom Jones, Executive Vice President and COO, Women’s World Banking

9.15-9.30 | Welcome Back Keynote – Championing the Economically Empowered Woman | Mainstage

9.30-10.30 | The “S” Factor: Shifting Focus in ESG Investments | Mainstage

Women’s economic empowerment has been underinvested in and poorly understood. Attention is often focused more on the E and the G with the S sandwiched in the middle. This session will outline how the asset owner, investor, and company manage the tension that can come with different ESG priorities. 

  • Joy Macknight, Editor, The Banker (Moderator)
  • Seema Hingorani, Managing Director, Morgan Stanley Investment Management
  • Kamar Jaffer, Partner, Allen & Overy
  • Charlie Bronks, SVP, Head of ESG, Crown Agents Bank 

10.30-11.00 | Tea and Coffee Networking Break

11.00-12.00 | The Gender Lens Investment Advantage | Mainstage

This session will explore what holistic Gender Lens Investing looks like and how it can be an onramp to a successful ESG strategy. Our panel of experts will share tips on the potential breadth and depth of Gender Lens Investing and how we can measure the success of a gender lens investment strategy. They will evidence how investing in businesses that are not just run by women, but that put women at the center of their business strategies (supply chain, leadership, workforce and product solutions), leads to higher returns on investments and economic growth.  

  • Amrita Vir, Head of Strategy & Business Expansion, wagely (Moderator)
  • Christina “CJ” Juhasz, CIO & Managing Partner, Women’s World Banking Asset Management
  • Michael Brill, Senior Portfolio Manager, KfW Development Bank
  • Paula Mariwala, Founding Partner, Aureolis Ventures

12.00–12.30 | How Did She Succeed: Woman Founder Spotlight | Mainstage
Too often the narrative is focused on why women founders aren’t receiving as much or no funding compared to their male counterparts – the barriers, the discrepancies… It’s a tale as old as time and it’s time to flip that narrative. This fireside chat will feature a woman founder and explore insights from her success story because it deserves to be elevated and inspire more stories like hers.

  • Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President & CEO, Women’s World Banking
  • Shruti Gonsalves, Managing Director & CEO, Sitara (SEWA Grih Rin Ltd.)

12.30 – 13.30 | Lunch

13.30–15.15 | Fourth Fintech Innovation Challenge | Mainstage

Our Fintech Innovation Challenge provides a global stage to elevate innovations in digital financial solutions across a suite of products that are designed to increase access to and engagement of financial solutions by unbanked and underserved women. Four finalists will take the stage and present to a distinguished judging panel. New this year, a portion of our programming will also highlight the “Female Founder’s Winner’s Circle” – seven female-founded fintechs, who made it to our top 10 shortlist of candidates and are paving the way for equal gender representation in a male-dominated industry.


  • Nicole Casperson, Founder, Fintech is Femme


  • Zouera Youssoufou, Managing Director & CEO, Aliko Dangote Foundation


  • Pat Patel, Executive Director, Elevandi 
  • Rupal Patil, Partner, EY  
  • David Shrier, Professor of Practice, AI & Innovation, Imperial College Business School 
  • Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President & CEO, Women’s World Banking  
  • Ramakrishnan Gopalan, Head of Products, India and South Asia, Visa
  • Deon Woods Bell, Senior Advisor, Global Policy, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation


  • Martyna Malinowska, Co-Founder & CPO, GajiGesa
  • Neha Juneja, Co-Founder & CEO, IndiaP2P  
  • Gabriel Ruhan, CEO Paycode and Heidi Patmore, Head of Marketing, Paycode 
  • Piya Bahadur, Co-Founder & CEO, MeraBills 

15.15-16.15 | Speed Research Presentations | Mainstage

  • Ineke Bussemaker, Former CEO, NMB Plc
  • Uloma Ogba, Lead Gender Specialist, Migration and Remittances, UNCDF
  • Prapti Sherchan, Operations Officer, Asia Lead for IFC’s Women’s Insurance Program, IFC
  • Payal Pathak, Program Officer, Visa Foundation
  • Vitasari Anggraeni, Deputy Director of Policy, Southeast Asia, Women’s World Banking

16.15-16.35 | Networking Break

16.35-17.30 | Get on the Balcony! | Mainstage 

Throughout the two days of the Summit, there have been many discussions about where we are in addressing women’s financial inclusion and where we need to be. This interactive session will guide participants to lead through complexity and change more effectively by applying an adaptive leadership approach. Be ready to “get on the balcony!”  

  • Sarah Buitoni, Director, Leadership & Diversity Programs, Women’s World Banking
  • Michael Useem, Professor of Management, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

17.30-18.00 | Fintech Innovation Challenge Winner Announcement & Award Ceremony | Mainstage

One winner out of the four finalists will be crowned the Fourth Fintech Innovation Challenge Champion.

18.00-18.15 | Closing Remarks | Mainstage

  • Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President & CEO, Women’s World Banking  

2023 Sponsors


Bill Melinda Gates Foundation logo


20170526 EY Digital Brand


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UNCDF logo
IFC Logo
We are grateful for the ongoing support of our core funders for enabling our strategy.
australian government department of foreign affairs and trade logo
australian aid logo
sida logo
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