Khairunissa Jiwani is a branch manager at IFC client bank HBL in Pakistan, where 97 percent of women lacked access to financial services as recently as 2014.
The next year we helped HBL launch gender intelligence training for all staff and management. Khairunissa was an early advocate, drawing on her own experience. “There have been many times when I have had to prove myself because I am a woman,” she says.
The training not only empowers women employees, but opens a vast new market. HBL now offers women clients many financial and non-financial products, aiming to be their bank of choice: a place where they are welcomed, heard, and valued—and can finance their dreams.
IFC’s Banking on Women program has helped 38 emerging market financial institutions enter the women’s market since 2010, providing $1.1 billion in new financing for women entrepreneurs.