Portfolio Manager to Access to Finance Rwanda (AFR)

Kigali, Rwanda

About AFR:

Access to Finance Rwanda (AFR) is a Rwandan not for profit company established in 2010 to promote financial inclusion and financial sector development. AFR is currently funded by Sweden, Jersey Overseas Aid, and the MasterCard Foundation.

AFR is part of the broader Financial Sector Deepening (FSD) network in Africa that seeks to create a transformative impact in ending of poverty by supporting efforts to improve financial inclusion and financial sector development by helping financial institutions, policymakers, regulators, and markets drive more inclusive and sustainable economic growth.

AFR supports the removal of systemic barriers that hinder access to financial services by low-income people, particularly the rural poor, women, youth, and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). AFR supports the development and provision of financial services including savings, credit, insurance, investment, payments, and remittances. AFR is a gender-intentional organization, having mainstreamed gender across all programming, and is guided by the Market System Development (MSD) approach recognizing that efforts to increase financial inclusion and financial sector development must be market-led, profitable, and sustainable. For more details visit our website: www.afr.rw

Access to Finance Rwanda seeks to recruit a Portfolio Manager for its upcoming project “SME Credit Guarantee Scheme” in collaboration with The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA)and partner Financial Service Providers (FSPs).

About the SME Credit Guarantee Scheme

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in productive sectors (including agriculture, light manufacturing, export, logistics, ICT, tourism and hospitality, and renewable energy) play a critical role in driving inclusive growth and employment opportunities. However, SMEs continue to face multiple challenges including limited understanding by FSPs of specific financial services needed by SMEs and the capacity to address those needs efficiently, limited availability of appropriate financial solutions for SMEs in productive sectors, lack of appropriate collaterals by SMEs in productive sectors, the high costs of borrowing and limited SME-centric risk mitigation solutions. Such constraints hinder access to finance and the potential for economic growth including for youth and women-owned/led SMEs.

In line with its strategy and in collaboration with key stakeholders, AFR will continue its journey towards addressing some of the root causes constraining access to financial services for SMEs in Rwanda through piloting a flexible portfolio credit guarantee in collaboration with SIDA and multiple Financial Service Providers (FSPs). This scheme seeks to support FSPs to better serve SMEs in productive sectors leading to business growth, improved profitability, and decent jobs creation.

It is expected that this pilot risk mitigation scheme will help to incentivize banks to increase their risk appetite and unlock more financing for SMEs in productive sectors.

The SME Guarantee Scheme comes with a technical assistance component. Its utilization will be focused on strengthening capabilities, supporting innovation to expand and deepen access to credit for SMEs, and ensuring the guarantee scheme reaches underserved populations including women and youth owned/managed SMEs.

The Role

The Portfolio Manager is responsible for the overall management of the scheme that provides guarantees to SMEs from FSPs under the guidelines of the scheme.   The Manager will be responsible for managing the scheme’s portfolio of guarantees, ensuring that they are compliant with the scheme’s guidelines and objectives, and working to mitigate challenges as well as resolve issues that arise.   The Manager will work closely with the scheme’s partner FSPs to ensure that they are receiving the support and guidance they need to succeed.

Reporting line: The position reports to the Head of Finance for Growth and Jobs.

Supervise: Credit Guarantee Scheme Support Officer

Location: Kigali, Rwanda

Duration of the contract: Two years renewable based on performance and successful completion of a probationary period.

Expected starting date: 1st October 2023

Scope of Responsibilities

The Portfolio Manager will be responsible for the following key tasks in relation to the SME Credit Guarantee Scheme Project (“the project”):

  • Provide thought leadership to the project team and relevant stakeholders on how to drive SME finance development and inclusiveness.
  • Manage the scheme that provides guarantees to SME borrowers who meet the necessary criteria.
  • Work closely with the partner FSPs and other stakeholders to ensure that the credit guarantee scheme is deployed efficiently and effectively.
  • Monitor the performance of the scheme to identify challenges, limitations, and barriers to FSPs and SMEs adoption and use of the scheme and work with stakeholders to make adjustments as necessary to ensure that it meets the scheme’s goals and objectives.
  • Support scoping and development of capacity building efforts in FSPs and SMEs in order to unlock barriers to access to credit.
  • Manage the credit guarantee scheme’s covered loan portfolio, ensuring compliance with scheme guidelines and objectives.
  • Proactively monitor and analyze the performance of the scheme, identifying trends and risks, and taking appropriate action to resolve risks before they become issues.
  • Work closely with the scheme’s FSPs, partners, and other stakeholders to ensure that they receive the support and guidance they need to succeed.
  • Ensure compliance with relevant regulations and guidelines, including those related to risk management and investment policies.
  • Develop and implement tools, templates, resources, guidelines, insights, strategies, and other documentation for fund utilization and portfolio management to achieve the scheme’s goals and potentially scale from pilot.
  • Build and maintain relationships with stakeholders, including partner FSPs, MSMEs, government agencies, and other partners.
  • Participate in the development of policies and procedures related to the credit guarantee scheme’s operations and activities.
  • Coordinate the Technical Assistance component of the SME Guarantee Scheme.
  • Lead and manage the credit guarantee scheme team towards high standards of performance through clear roles and responsibilities and provision of appropriate support; proactively address performance issues through timely constructive feedback, coaching and appropriate corrective action.

Educational Qualifications

  • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree in finance, economics, or a related field applicable to this position. Master’s degree will be an added advantage.
  • Additional professional qualification and relevant accreditations are an advantage.
  • Certification in Project Management is preferred.

Experience and technical skills


  • A minimum of 5 years working experience (at least 3 at a senior level), in SME finance environment
  • At least 2 years’ experience working with credit guarantees and fund management at senior level.
  • Strong analytical skills and the ability to analyze complex financial and non-financial data.
  • Knowledge of credit risk management principles and practices.
  • Knowledge of investment management principles and practices.
  • Track record of managing relationships and influencing a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Ability to work independently, manage multiple priorities, and meet deadlines.
  • Understanding of the monitoring and results measurement concepts and processes
  • Understanding of incentive structures and impact on financial products and markets
  • Strong computer skills, including proficiency in Excel and other financial analysis tools.
  • Excellent written and spoken English.


  • Prior experience working with Market Systems Development (MSD) approaches.
  • Languages: Kinyarwanda, French.

Attitude/ competences

  • Strategic thinking and thought leadership.
  • Strong drive for results
  • Strong sense of engagement, sense of initiative, and decisiveness
  • Pro-innovation and idea generation to serve the goals of the project.
  • Of a dynamic nature and initiates and maintains positive relationships with others.
  • Strong communication and influencing skills.
  • Highest degree of professionalism and integrity.
  • Learning and resourcefulness.
  • Team oriented, collaborative, flexible and can adapt to a changing environment.

How to Apply

Interested candidates should send their both combined cover letter and well-detailed CV no later than 31st August 2023 at 5:00 pm.  via the apply button below.

The application should contain a Resume with an e-mail address, daytime telephone contact, qualifications, achievements, experience, and names & addresses of three professional referees, together with a cover letter (maximum 2 pages) summarizing why you consider yourself particularly well suited for the position. Do not attach any other documents at this point.

All applications will be selected on merit and only shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews. For any questions regarding the application process, please contact hr@jobinrwanda.com.


  • This position is open to national candidates only.
  • Qualified women candidates are encouraged to apply.

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