John Lwande 2017 Speaker

Program Director, ABF (Africa Board Fellowship) Program

Accion, All Africa


Leading Accion’s Africa Board Fellowship program, focused on strengthening governance and risk-management practices, technology trends and innovation as well as developing strategic leadership abilities in Africa through peer learning for board members of banks, MFIs and Fintechs. More than 27 years of experience in microfinance management, banking and credit. Managing Director Akiba Commercial Bank, Tanzania, 2008 to 2015 on management contract and secondment from Accion International. Chairman of Umoja Switch Company Ltd an ATMs network for member banks, switch operated by BCX of South Africa. Led Tanzania Umoja Swtich connected banks delegation to Union Pay Hq, Shanghai, China to negotiate a Union Pay business engagement with the Tanzania banks via credit cards on the shared switch. Also negotiated with Diebold for ATMs supply, training and maintenance contracts for the Umoja Switch networked banks. FINCA International. Regional Credit Direction, Africa Region from Nov 2005 to May 2008. Lead expert for all credit operations for FINCA in the Africa region, 5 countries, Congo DRC, Tanzania, Uganda, Malawi and Zambia. Chief Manager, Microfinance- National Microfinance Bank NMB, now largest bank in Tanzania on management contract from DAI (Development Alternatives Inc, MD, Bethesda, USA).

Commercial Bank of Zimbabwe; 1995 – 1999 – seconded by CARE International as lead manager for the Community Banking Project of the bank, implemented SMEs portfolio throughout the branch network with a UK government grant of £800k loan guarantee fund and UKL 25k standby liquidity. Portfolio recognized with A ranking by ABSA bank at time of acquisition of majority stake in the bank. KREP Bank now Sidian Bank, Kenya 1988 – 1995 Regional Manager and lead the credit team as Credit Manager. Kenya Women Finance Trust, Kenya; affiliate of Women’s World Banking , Branch Manager, 2 years up to 1988. Extensive experience in governance served on numerous boards throughout my career; in addition to his passion for financial inclusion, also sits on the board of AVI (Allied Value Investors) a property investments fund, a private sector initiative in Johannesburg, South Africa. He has worked in several countries in Africa, interacted internationally with both development agencies and the private sector; now lives in Nairobi, Kenya.


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