Regional Director, Asia

Singapore, Singapore
Apply by 20 August 2018
Senior-level , Full-time staff position
Posted on 31 July 2018

Job Description

*Preferred location: Singapore. Other locations to be determined by home country of a successful candidate within Asia where VF/WVI is registered to operate.


VisionFund International (VFI) is seeking a Regional Director (RD) to lead and manage the execution of VisionFund’s strategy in the region. The CEO of each Micro Finance Institution (MFI) in the region will report jointly to the RD and their local Boards, and the RD will represent VFI on the MFI Boards in the region.

The RD is responsible for ensuring the delivery of the ‘double bottom line’ of financial and social performance in the region. The role also involves managing any regional staff who support the RD in capacity-building and oversight of the MFIs, ensuring proper governance, controls, policies, procedures, and performance targets are achieved.

The position ensures that regional direction and country level strategies and budgets are aligned to the global VFI strategy and tied into the regional and country level WV strategies. He/she will ensure that all growth initiatives are well-managed both at the local and regional levels, and that the foundations for such growth are in place. Therefore capacity-building of staff and ensuring effective controls and processes are in place is a key aspect of the role.

Measures and targets will be established and agreed for each MFI and quarterly reviews held to establish progress and decide upon adjustments and redirection of resources, particularly funding, in consultation with the VFI Regional Finance Director (RFD) in the region.

As VFI has an increasing number of specialists in regional roles (e.g. Finance, Audit, IT, Governance) the RD will ensure regular communication and coordination with the different activities.

As part of the role, the RD will also need to work with World Vision (WV) teams responsible for the overall delivery of strategies and programs (where appropriate) to ensure that the microfinance work is fully integrated into transformational development initiatives, providing sustained economic development in the Area Development Programs (ADP’s) where combined interventions to support livelihoods will provide improved outcomes for families and children.


Develop and maintain strong foundations for controlled growth and delivery of double bottom line objectives:

  • Supervise MFI CEOs and manage performance expectations in support to local MFI and global VFI priorities, ensuring balanced achievement of MFI double bottom lines of social and financial performance.
  • Responsible for ensuring all MFI’s have well-operating boards and are in compliance with local laws, regulatory requirements and WV/VFI policies, procedures and directives.
  • Supervise Deputy Regional Director(s) and direct their work accordingly.
  • Sit on and attend board meetings to represent WV/VFI’s ownership position.

Work with the Regional Finance Director to ensure that MFIs have strong financial management:

  • Lead and coordinate the development of long range plan and annual budget for each of the MFI’s in coordination with the VFI Regional Finance Director.
  • Review and refine MFI annual plans.
  • Recommend regional targets and programs to meet local WV and VFI goals.
  • Ensure that plan/budget variances are well understood by the MFI’s and VFI management and any corrective actions are planned and undertaken.
  • Establish “work out” plans when targets are not achieved including analysis of staff capabilities and support institutional building measures to keep the MFI performance back on track.

Regulation and Transformation:

  • Where sensible or necessary, support MFIs in developing business cases and seeking approval for transformation of MFI’s into regulated deposit-taking institutions.
  • Support MFI CEOs in developing solid relationships with all central banks or other regulators ensuring that VFI can contribute to proposed regulation changes and laws when approporiate.
  • Ensure that all MFI’s are compliant with the regulators’ requirements.

WV Coordination and Integration:

  • Ensure that MFIs are working closely with their WV NOs at all levels, and that VFI guidelines for integration are being put into practice.
  • Attend WV regional leadership team meetings as needed, ensuring VisionFund strategy and intent in respect of livelihood development are well understood, and WV strategy and tactics are clear and are relayed to all MFI staff and boards.
  • Provide regional input and support to Global Centre initiatives and projects.

Personal and Staff Development:

  • Develop clear individual staff goals with manageable and measurable targets and ongoing feedback and support to achieve them
  • Provide ongoing feedback and coaching to direct reports and at least quarterly staff performance evaluations as well as an annual review of performance and career development,
  • Ensure staff and self-training programs are in place and implemented, making use of existing resources such as VFI Global Centre staff and capabilities of the more advanced MFIs in the region.

Will carry out additional responsibilities and projects as assigned, including administrative and planning functions both within and outside the region.


The key ability VisionFund is seeking is leadership – both professional and spiritual. In addition to experience with microfinance and banking operations (lending, deposit-taking), the successful candidate will have experience developing and nurturing a talented team, and spotting improvement opportunities and making those happen in a complex and dynamic environment.

The following specific knowledge, experience, skills and abilities are required, and may have been acquired through a combination of formal schooling, self education, prior experience or on the job training:

  • Educated to at least degree level, preferably with professional qualification or an MBA.
  • Given the need to control financial risk within the MFI’s, it is imperative that this individual will have good financial analysis, risk management and accounting skills.
  • Thorough knowledge and extensive experience in financial services, preferably with microfinance experience.
  • Experience of managing people.
  • Leadership experience largely in a banking, finance or microfinance environment.
  • An understanding of balance sheet risk management including interest rate risk, liquidity risk and foreign exchange risk.
  • Solid understanding of financial reporting and performance measurements and planning/forecasting.
  • Good project management and organizational skills.
  • Ability to analyze, recommend solutions, mentor and direct people.
  • Balanced and respectful approach to groups’ differing responsibilities. Sensitive to complexity of WV direction, MFI board independence and shareholder requirements.
  • Good communication and influence skills in both oral and written forms.
  • Strong staff leader desirous of developing and encouraging staff.
  • Effective coach and able to train people in VisionFund policies and procedures.
  • Must be able to simultaneously manage multiple priorities and projects.
  • Must be cross culturally sensitive as will work with associates from different cultural contexts and time zones.
  • Flexibility on hours to contact people within wide time zone differences is required.
  • Ability and willingness to travel extensively.
  • Board experience having been a Board member of several Boards (in either an Executive or Non-Executive capacity).
  • Ability to openly speak about their faith and lead devotions.

About the Organization

VisionFund International (VFI) is the world’s largest Christian microfinance network. For more than a decade we have been improving the lives of children across the developing world, as we provide small loans and other financial services to families struggling in poverty.

As the microfinance subsidiary of World Vision, the world’s largest Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation, we work in 30+ countries through our network of affiliated microfinance institutions (MFIs) located across the globe in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. We have an outstanding loan portfolio of nearly US$ 535 million, serve over 1.2 million active borrowers and impact the lives of over 4 million children each year.

Sharing the same vision as World Vision, VFI aims to provide ‘life in all its fullness’ to children as their parents receive small loans, improve their businesses and increase in ability to care for their children as family incomes multiply.

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