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Sustainable Bond of the Year Award Info Session

22 May 2024
8 : 00
9 : 00
Sustainable Bond of the Year Award Info Session

Global SME Finance Awards 2024

Information Session - Sustainable Bond of the Year


Be recognized, Share impact in SME FINANCE

Wednesday May 22nd, 2024 @ 8:00am – 9:00am EDT

The SME Finance Forum organizes the Global SME Finance Awards (The Awards) as a core part of its mission to create a unique platform for peer connections, knowledge dissemination, and innovations in SME Finance. The Forum’s extensive 300+ global network, crowds in financial institutions, fintech companies, development banks, policymakers, and industry experts from across the globe, fostering collaboration, knowledge sharing, and partnership building on a global scale. Hence, the Global SME Finance Awards has evolved into a pinnacle of global recognition for those making a real impact in the SME finance landscape.

Since its launch in 2018, The Awards recognize and celebrate the outstanding achievements of financial service providers in delivering exceptional products and services to scale SME finance in their respective markets. It provides an opportunity for institutions to highlight and share good practices, impact, knowledge, and be recognized amongst the global peer group of world leaders in SME finance and services.

We are rolling out a series of Information Sessions during the 2024 Awards Season to share with Financial Service Providers (FSPs) and Industry Stakeholders the role and importance of The Awards in showcasing remarkable achievements and impact in the industry. The sessions also aim to provide information on the application process, respective awards categories, and related information on the awards. Speakers include industry leaders and practitioners from the Forum’s global network, as well as past applicants and winners.

The 3rd in the series, this information session will focus on the Sustainable Bond of the Year category, its role, importance, and value to Financial Service Providers (FSPs). Winners and applicants from prior years will also discuss their innovations, impacts, and application experience. The session will include a moderated Q&A to address specific questions from entrants.

If you want to see general information about the Awards, click on the link of the first information session recording LINK



  • Share the role and importance of the Global SME Finance Awards in facilitating impact and spurring innovations in SME Finance
  • Entrants Incentives and Benefits
  • Provide information on Sustainable Bond of the Year Category, Application Process and Judging Criteria
  • Highlight What’s New in the 2024 Season
  • Share experiences and highlight innovations and achievements of Past Winners/ Applicants
  • Address specific questions from existing and prospective entrants.


Here's a surprise: winners of the category will have the hotel nights covered in São Paulo for up to three staff members, ensuring you can receive your award in person and benefit from incredible networking opportunities!!




Moderator: Kaikham Onedamdy, Operations Officer, Climate Finance IFC

Kaikham is the team lead of the IFC Green Bond Technical Assistance public goods program. She has over 23 years of wide-ranging experience in Strategy, Investment, Advisory, Access to Finance, PPP Infrastructure, SMEs, Gender Finance and Telecom within IFC and the private sector. She has worked across Europe and Central Asia, the Mekong region, Middle East and North Africa, and on selective PPP infrastructure projects in Africa. Kaikham holds two master’s degrees in IT & Telecom from Johns Hopkin University and an International MBA from Ottawa University.


Gladness DeogratiasHead Global Markets, NMB Bank Plc

Gladness is a banking executive, currently leading Global Markets at NMB Bank Plc in East Africa, where she oversees capital markets activities, including sustainable financing. She actively promotes diversity and inclusion, having initiated programs like Finance2Equal and Gender Bond. Previously, she worked at BancABC, Lehman Brothers, and Deloitte. She serves on the boards of TMRC and ProjektInspire. Gladness holds an MBA from Oxford Brookes University, a BA from the University of Nottingham, and a Certificate in Company Direction from the Institute of Directors (UK). She's an Eisenhower Fellow and was honored among the Top 50 Women in Management by Women in Management Africa.


João Pedro StephanouManager of Finance Institutions of Sicredi

With a degree with honours in Business Administration from Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (BRA) and a Specialization in Finance from the same university, João Pedro has been working at the Sicredi Cooperative Bank since 2018, working on topics such as Corporate Finance, Sustainable Finance and Institutional Funding.



Helena Dill Sustainable Finance Specialist IFC

Helena has 12+ years of experience working globally on finance, sustainable development, capital markets, investment projects, and public policy. Prior to joining IFC, Helena worked for the World Bank’s Treasury advising countries on sustainable finance instruments and solutions to manage financial, disaster, and commodity risks. Before that, she served as an advisor at Brazil’s Presidency of the Republic and the Ministry of Finance, structuring public-private partnerships and infrastructure projects and advising on regulatory reforms of financial markets and other industries. She was also a Manager at the Brazilian National Treasury, negotiating and approving investment loans. Helena has a Master’s in Public Policy from Georgetown University and a Master’s in Development Economics from Brazil..


Host: Qamar Saleem, Head SME Finance Forum

Prior to this role, Qamar was the Manager Financial Institutions Group Advisory Services for Asia and Pacific driving leading a large team across 20 countries aimed at providing integrated investment/advisory client solutions across mainly MSME, Gender, Climate, Digital, Housing, Trade, and Supply Chain Finance. Qamar has been with IFC since 2012 and served in his previous roles as global technical lead for SME and Supply Chain Finance as well as regional SME Banking lead for EMENA.  Qamar has 30+ years of global financial services experience having worked across 60+ countries internationally managing large business lines while leading multi-cultural and cross-functional teams. He is a recognized thought leader, featured speaker, and an industry mentor in SME Finance. Prior to joining IFC, Qamar was associated with international organizations like HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Deutsche Bank as well as large regional banks while serving in several emerging markets where he also led SME Banking and Commercial Banking Divisions.  Qamar holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration and carries several certifications in the areas of Strategy, Climate Finance, Digital Banking, Business Transformation, Social Impact, MSME Banking, Team Leadership, Supply Chain Finance, Credit, Risk, Trade, Sales Effectiveness, Transaction Banking and Project Implementation.


Sustainable Finance