Global SME Finance Awards

Global SME Finance Awards

2021 Global SME Finance Awards submission period is closed.

Winners will be announced at the 2021 Global SME Finance Forum on October 18-21st, 2021.

We look forward to hearing from financial intermediaries from across the spectrum and globe, as the need to learn from each other is even greater as we look to recover from the impact of Covid-19.

New for this year’s competition!

SME Bank of the Year is now SME Financier of the Year

We encourage non-banking financial institutions as well as banks to apply in this category. There have been some modifications made to the entry, so if you have applied in the past, look out for those changes!

Awards for entries from IDA and Fragile and Conflict-Affected Situations

Awards will be given in the SME Financier of the Year and the Product Innovation of the Year categories
for entries that present work and innovations focused in any of the
World Bank’s designated IDA countries and/or fragile and conflict-affected situations (FCS).

Affiliated with

Key Dates

Deadline for submission:
2 July, 2021
Winners Announced:
18 - 21 October 2021
TBD Virtual


1. Nomination is open to all banks, financial institutions and fintech companies.

2. Each institution can apply in up to two categories

3. Each nomination form is valid for 1 entry only. If you are applying in two categories, please enter each entry separately.

4. Nomination is free of charge.

How to apply?

  • Fill out the form with details about company
    and main contact person for the Awards nomination
  • Select your category
  • Follow the process to address the criteria and complete your entry
  • Upload supporting documents (if any)
  • Submit application
  • You will receive a confirmation that your nomination has been received
  • Submit your entries by July 2, 2021

If your question has not been answered in the FAQ section please send your question to the awards organizers by clicking on the button below.

Judging criteria

Awards will be judged by a committee of industry experts. Judging criteria is specific to each category and may include the following areas:
What is the number of SMEs served/financed and volume of financing provided/loan outstanding to the SMEs both directly and indirectly?
Uniqueness & Innovation
Has the project introduced new or cutting-edge innovation? How original is the idea compared to solutions that are currently in use?
Effectiveness & Impact
Did the project/product/service achieve its objectives and targets? What measures have been used to assess its success? What was the impact to your company and industry?
Dynamism & Scalability
Is the strategy, project, service or product flexible to changes and progressive opportunities?