Fundación Microfinanzas BBVA

“Philanthropy for development should be ethical and sustainable with measurable results”


These are the words of the President of the Board of BBVA Microfinance Foundation, which summarize its Decalog about what philanthropy should be like for development in 2030.

Claudio González-Vega clarifies that they are not commands: “We rely on our experience,” he maintained in his speech at the netFWD, organized by the OECD.

1. Philanthropy should be ethical, rooted in values with an ethical code to support it.

2. Customer-centric. It is essential that organizations place the customer at the center of all activity so that they can progress. BBVAMF supports and accompanies nearly two million vulnerable entrepreneurs who need access to financial services and training for sustainable development. “We don’t get them out of poverty. They get themselves out”, González-Vega noted.

“We don’t get them out of poverty. They get themselves out”

3. Knowledge-based. “The exponential rate of change and tremendous complexity shape an uncertain future in which knowledge plays a key role,” the President of the board of BBVAMF maintained. Especially in microfinance, a model based on human relationships where innovation plays a key role. The following two points may arise from this need to acquire greater knowledge: increased cooperation and greater diversity of information sources.

4. Cooperation. “Goals cannot be met only through individual effort,” Claudio González-Vega pointed out. Within an organization, the contribution and commitment of each of its players is important.

5. Greater diversity of sources of knowledge. For BBVAMF, this comes from the four components that make up the institution. The first, the “philanthropist”: the BBVA Group, with over 150 years of banking experience. It created the Foundation in 2007 as a legally independent organization and with no return for it other than reputation related. Furthermore, the nonprofit Foundation promotes the development of hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs in Latin America and the microfinance sector as an engine of progress and economic and social growth of vulnerable people. The third source of knowledge are BBVAMF Group’s microfinance institutions that are regulated by the country’s legal framework and working under the Foundation’s Code of Good Governance. And finally, entrepreneurs from all sectors and areas. “You don’t only have to learn about them, but also from them”, says the president of the board.


intervención Claudio Gonzalez Vega en netFWD OCDE

Claudio González-Vega speaking at netFWD, organized by OECD

6. Efficient. For the philanthropy model to be sustainable, it must be efficient. “You have to use available resources in the most efficient way from the cost and profit standpoint”, González-Vega maintained.

7. Sustainable in all dimensions. For the customer’s development to be long term, the relationship with the institution should be too.

8. With proper regulation, that encourages innovation and allows philanthropies to carry out their work.

9. With measurable results, as a management tool and as part of the knowledge needed to build sustainable institutions. BBVA Microfinance Foundation produces an annual report on social performance “by measuring what really matters” which reflects the initial conditions of its customers and their progress over time to adapt products and services to capacity and customer needs.

10. With alliances and partners to reach more people, develop new tools and boost the sector through collective know-how. BBVAMF works with large institutions such as the United Nations, the Inter-American Development Bank and the International Investment Fund. “We are where we believe we can contribute and especially where we believe we can learn”, Claudio González-Vega maintained.

“We are where we believe we can contribute and especially where we believe we can learn”

The netFWD, which just held its annual meeting at its headquarters in Paris, is an initiative of the OECD’s Development Center to promote cooperation and exchange of ideas from several foundations, including BBVA Microfinance Foundation. Representatives of the institutions have discussed philanthropy as being a key player in achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda.