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Village des innovateurs de la SAM 2019 à Ouagadougou

48th Midi de la Microfinance et de l'inclusion financière

When investment, inclusion and innovation meet together!

Thursday February 27, 2020, from 12.00 to 14.00 at the Banque de Luxembourg

I want to participate

Microfinance is innovative by nature: from its inception, it has used financial techniques and banking tools to innovate in the service of inclusion. In an ever-changing world, where new technologies are changing supplier/client relationships and innovation is making a real difference to people's daily lives, financial inclusion is fully committed to this transformation, with many challenges such as reducing operating costs, managing risk, creating new products and services that are more sustainable or more adapted to clients, facilitating proximity and monitoring repayment.

This observation was also highlighted during the last SAM (African Microfinance Week), a conference organised last October in Ouagadougou by ADA, where one of the conclusions stressed the urgency of modernising the sector in Africa in order to achieve the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. This modernization is reflected in particular in digital, environmental or agricultural innovations to facilitate access to finance for the most disadvantaged and to offer goods and services compatible with climate commitments. So many ideas are emerging on the Continent today! But to realize and commercialize these ideas, innovators and start-ups need funds. How do you find financing when you are an entrepreneur in a southern country, when you are targeting markets that are certainly growing but sometimes considered unstable, when you want to have an impact and contribute to inclusion? What are the investment needs? What opportunities do public and private institutions offer today?  We will therefore let an innovator and an investor discuss together and answer these questions in order to understand how their action contributes to poverty reduction, how investment can be used to promote inclusive innovation.

ADA, with the support of Infine.lu and the Directorate for Development and Humanitarian Affairs, is pleased to welcome two exceptional guests on 27 February in the Auditorium of the Banque de Luxembourg:

  • Jean-Baptiste Lenoir, Co-founder & President of Qotto, an African start-up,
  • and Jean-Philippe De Schrevel, Founder and Managing Partner of Bamboo Capital Partners, one of the world's largest investment funds focused on impact financing and start-ups.

This debate will be moderated by Laura Foschi, Executive Director of ADA. Manuel Tonnar, Deputy Director of the Directorate for Development and Humanitarian Affairs of the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, will conclude the meeting.

At the end of May, ADA will also organise an Inclusive Innovation Village in Luxembourg to present 25 innovators from Africa, Latin America or South East Asia who put innovation at the service of inclusion.

About Qotto:

Launched in 2016, this start-up provides essential services to which 800 million Africans still do not have access, empowering rural and peri-urban populations in West Africa. Qotto develops and operates a platform, designed to make these services accessible to the entire population at the bottom of the pyramid:

  • Access to electricity: the sale (on a lease basis) of solar kits provides access to an affordable source of energy. More than 10,000 people are already benefiting from these services. Some of them monetize this asset by generating income, reselling energy to their neighbors, recharging mobile phones.
  • Internet access: a technical solution that provides 4G quality internet access in rural areas. This solution also allows customers to resell bandwidth to their neighbours.
  • Financial services to run its solar kit business: customer knowledge and credit rating solutions.  The company thus accumulates detailed knowledge of its customers' financial habits. Thanks to this knowledge, Qotto is able to design a range of financial services adapted to their needs and means and is ready to deploy them. 

With a global service offering, based on its technological platform and peer-to-peer logic, Qotto's approach differs from that of incumbent energy players, telcos or banks, who remain on centralized and hierarchical designs of their network, or that of new entrants and their "solar home system", who struggle to make their unique product model profitable.

To make this vision a reality, the founders, Jean-Baptiste Lenoir and Fabrice de Gaudemar, have brought together an experienced and complementary team, and today more than 150 people have been working successfully in Benin and Burkina Faso (6 commercial poles) for almost two years. Through its action, Qotto has already changed the lives of more than 10,000 people.

About Bamboo Capital Partners :

Bamboo Capital Partners is a commercial private equity firm that makes significant investments. It finds game-changing companies and then applies a mix of geographic and sector expertise to achieve financial and social returns. Specializing in energy, healthcare and financial services on a global scale, Bamboo has offices in Luxembourg, Geneva, Bogota, Nairobi and Singapore.

Since its launch in 2007, Bamboo has proven that private capital can be used profitably as an effective tool for change. It manages nearly $400 million with a portfolio of companies in more than 30 countries.

In the press : 

Thursday, 27 February 2020
From 12.00 to 14.00
At Banque de Luxembourg
14 boulevard Royal, L-2449 Luxembourg


I want to register 

Watch the live conference on our YouTube channel
Thursday, 27 February 2020 at 12:00 (local time - Luxembourg)



11.50: Admission to the event - Closing doors at 12.00 (latecomers pass by the top of the auditorium)

12.00: Welcome remarks - Mélanie Mortier, Sr Portfolio Manager-Private Banking Investments, Banque de Luxembourg 

12.05: Debate with the speakers:

  • Jean-Philippe de Schrevel – Founder and Managing Partner, Bamboo Capital Partners
  • Jean-Baptiste Lenoir – Co-founder & President, Qotto
  • Moderation: Laura Foschi – Executive Director, ADA, Luxembourg

12.35: Questions and answers with the audience

12.55: Closing remarks - Manuel Tonnar – Deputy Director of the Directorate for Development and Humanitarian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, Luxembourg

13.00: Lunch offered to the participants

This conference will be in the form of a discussion of 30 minutes between the different participants.

The conference will take place in French.
Participation in this 48th Midi is free, but registration is compulsory.

Please arrive no later than 5 minutes before the start of the conference and do not use the parking lot of the Banque de Luxembourg, which is strictly reserved for customers. We advise you to favor public transport.


Participants are informed that they are likely to appear on photos and / or videos taken during this event. These photos and / or videos can be used on media published by the organizers of the event.
However, if you object to the right to the image, thank you to manifest with our teams on the spot before the beginning of the event.

The data collected during your registration are processed in accordance with the provisions of the law on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data. You have a right of access to your data and you can request their correction or deletion. You can contact us: .

Jean-Philippe de Schrevel – Founder and Managing Partner, Bamboo Capital Partners

Jean-Philippe de Schrevel is the Founder and a Managing Partner at Bamboo Capital Partners. Jean-Philippe has dedicated most of his career to the development of the “impact investing” field of which he is considered to be a global pioneer, having launched 8 investment funds and raised over a billion USD to date across a variety of asset classes (fixed income, private equity, venture capital, structured finance) and many sectors (microfinance, energy, healthcare, education, agribusiness, affordable housing). Jean-Philippe’s journey stems from early personal exposure to extreme poverty while travelling, working and living in Eastern Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America. His work objectives are driven by deeply rooted faith and values and an ambition to contribute to solving at scale some of the most critical problems of our planet. Realizing “investments that matter” is the path he has chosen to follow some 20 years ago. Jean-Philippe notably co-founded in 2001 BlueOrchard Finance (a pioneer commercial lender to Microfinance banks) and worked at McKinsey & Co, the UN as well as for various NGOs. He holds a MBA from the Wharton School of Business and speaks fluently French, English and Spanish.

Jean-Baptiste Lenoir – Co-founder & President, Qotto

"It was in Somalia and Darfur with Action Against Hunger that I realized one thing: industry is not meeting the needs of a large part of Africans. And yet it has the capacity to do so. The 4 billion people who live on less than $2 a day have needs and can finance them with the right model! »

During his engineering studies, in 1993, Jean-Baptiste went to Burkina Faso for a few months to build a school. He discovers the energy of the country and the continent. After a few years in the telecom industry, where he saw the internet revolution, Jean-Baptiste decided to leave again. In 2003, it is in Somalia and Kenya that he directs the operations of Action Against Hunger.
In spite of himself, he experiences life outside the electricity grid and the difficulties that this entails.

Back in France, Jean-Baptiste resumed his career in the telecom industry, notably as Sales Director for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Thomson Telecom.

In 2012, during his MBA at Essec, Jean-Baptiste became aware of the immense needs of the populations of Sub-Saharan Africa. He launches into rural electrification and draws on his past experiences in Africa and in industry.

In 2016 he co-founds Qotto with his friend Fabrice de Gaudemar. At Qotto Jean-Baptiste focuses on the commercial, marketing and management aspects of the teams and the deployment of operations in Africa.


Laura Foschi – Executive Director, ADA, Luxembourg

Laura Foschi is currently Executive Director at ADA, a Luxembourg NGO that promotes inclusive finance worldwide. She is also Senior Investment Manager and responsible for all investment services to Luxembourg Microfinance Development Fund (LMDF). Prior to this position, she has been Deputy Director at ADA for 3 years, and the general director of the microfinance investment vehicle Consorzio Etimos for 5 years. She has also coordinated and delivered training and technical assistance in microfinance programmes during more than 10 years in Latin America, Africa and the Balkans.

She has been a member of the board of directors of FEBEA (European Federation of Eth ical and Alternative Banks). She was a lecturer at the University of Parma where she taught the Economics of Microfinance and she was also a board member of the Master on Finance for Development. She additionally worked as a consultant for UN agencies such as CEPAL (Comission Economica para America Latina y Caribe) as well as European commission funded programmes.

She has written publications on social banking as well as social capital and microfinance. She fluently speaks Italian, French, English and Spanish. She is a member of the Steering Committee of the Responsible Microfinance Facility and of the EIIL (European Impact Investing Luxembourg). Her main areas of interest are impact and inclusive finance, sustainable development and green economy.

She currently provides trainings and lectures on inclusive finance at University of Luxembourg, Université de Lorraine, European Microfinance Programme (Libre Université de Bruxelles), and many other training centres in Africa, Latin America and Asia.

Manuel Tonnar – Deputy Director of the Directorate for Development and Humanitarian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, Luxembourg

Manuel Tonnar is a Luxembourgish national and has been Deputy Director of the Directorate for Development and Humanitarian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs since 2013. He joined the Directorate in 2004, where he was successively in charge of multilateral aid programs, cooperation with NGOs and bilateral aid programs in Asia, before being appointed general coordinator of all aid programmes in 2009. Before entering the Luxembourgish Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, Manuel worked for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP/UNCDF) as a program officer in Vietnam and Mali in the areas of decentralization, private sector development and microfinance. From 1997 to 1999, he worked as a commercial manager for blast furnaces innovation projects at Paul Wurth S.A., Luxembourg. Manuel is a member of the Board of Directors and of the Audit Committee of Lux-Development. He is Alternate governor of the International Fund for Agricultural Development as well as a member of the Board of Directors of the Luxembourg Microfinance Development Fund and the Luxembourg Inclusive Finance Network. Manuel holds an M.A. in Economics (1996) from the Université des Sciences Sociales Toulouse I and an M.B.A. in International Business Management (1997) from the Institut Commercial de Nancy and the Universidad La Salle of Mexico.

Mélanie Mortier – Sr Portfolio Manager-Private Banking Investments, Banque de Luxembourg 

Mélanie Mortier joined Banque de Luxembourg in 2018 as part of the Private Banking Investments team. One of her key responsibilities is socially-responsible investment fund mandates.  Mélanie has a degree in Management from Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium, and has more than 17 years of experience in the Luxembourg financial sector.


This 48th Midi de la microfinance is organised with the support of the Directorate for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs, and the InFine.lu network, and in collaboration with the Banque de Luxembourg.
The Midis de la microfinance are held during lunch breaks, between 12.00 and 14.00. Their agenda includes the presentation by an inclusive-finance expert of a study or a practical case, which is followed by a questions and answers session with the audience. At the end, a lunch is offered to all the participants.

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