BBVA has once again been recognized, this time by the panel of the ECOFIN Awards, which has selected the bank as the best “International Brand-Image for Spain” in 2016. The award recognizes the work carried out by the BBVA Microfinance Foundation (FMBBVA) and the advice provided by BBVA to companies that expand abroad.
These awards recognize financial companies with a management model that strives for excellence. In the case of BBVA, FMBBVA’s work was one of the points highlighted by the panel. Its track record, which is summarized in the 2015 Social Impact Report. Measuring what really matters, is the best calling card for an institution that has become one of the philanthropic initiatives with the highest social impact in Latin America.
FMBBVA currently serves 1.7 million people in Colombia, Peru, the Dominican Republic, Chile, Panama, Argentina and Puerto Rico. Since its creation in 2007, it has granted 7.2 billion dollars in loans to nearly five million vulnerable entrepreneurs, improving the lives of almost seven million people.
83% of the small entrepreneurs it supports are poor or vulnerable. Of these, 47% are illiterate or have only finished primary education and most are women. One of its greatest achievements is that 32.5% of the entrepreneurs it supports escape poverty two years after joining the Foundation, and after three years their sales increase by 57%. The Foundation has specific programs both for them and for people living in the streets, refugees, convicts or indigenous populations. The United Nations has recently recognized the FMBBVA’s contribution to the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) as regards the fight against poverty and gender inequality, as well as its support for decent work and economic growth.
The ECOFIN awards panel also recognized BBVA for its work providing advice to companies expanding abroad. In this case, the bank’s experience is instrumental in supporting entrepreneurs: “BBVA is present in 35 countries and we therefore understand the reality in all of them and can offer specialized advice to companies expanding abroad”, said Fernando Alonso, Head of BBVA Spain’s Corporate and Business Banking. According to Alonso, this work has evolved with the 1+9 model: “Now, each company has a relationship manager and 9 specialists who provide advice in key areas for the company. And one of these specialists is an expert in foreign trade”.