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Charity Event
Théâtre Les Salons
March 12th 2020

The future of social impact investing

Addressing social challenges through financial innovation and financial inclusion

About the event

IPACE organised a charity event that was held on Thursday, the 12th of March 2020  at Théâtre les Salons, in Geneva.

The purpose of this event was to raise money to develop humanitarian projects in the area of education for disadvantaged children in Vietnam such as the construction of kindergarten classrooms and sanitary facilities.

The event was organised as a conference to debate about the future of social impact investing and the role of innovation and financial inclusion in addressing social challenges.

The Speakers


Keynote speaker

Dr. Maximilian Martin

Global Head of Philanthropy Lombard Odier

Dr Maximilian Martin is Lombard Odier’s Global Head of Philanthropy and led the ICRC’s “Program for Humanitarian Impact Investment” transaction on the side of the co-sponsor. One of Europe’s impact pioneers, he created Europe’s first university course on social entrepreneurship, Europe’s first philanthropic services & impact investing offering for a bank, founded Impact Economy, coined corporate impact venturing, and wrote the UK Cabinet Office Primer “Status of the Social Impact Investing Market” for the first G8 policy makers’ conference on impact investing. He holds a MPA from Harvard and a PhD from Hamburg. His book “Building the Impact Economy: Our Future, Yea or Nay” (Springer, 2016) develops a comprehensive framework for creating sustainable new business approaches.


Dr. Michel Girardin

Partner - MacroGuide LLC

Lecturer in Finance - University of Geneva

Dr. Michel Girardin teaches Economics and Finance at the University of Geneva. His video course on investment management ranks in the top 3 most popular courses out of 980 Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) in Business on Coursera’s platform and has been followed by more than 650’000 students worldwide since 2016. Michel has more than 25 years experience as Chief Economist and Chief Investment Officer in the Swiss private banking sector. In 2012, Michel was included in Bilan magazine’s ranking of the 50 most influential personalities of the Swiss financial sector. He holds a PhD and a B.A in Economics from the University of Lausanne as well as a Master of Science in Economics from the London School of Economics.



Roland Dominicé

CEO & Co-Founder


Roland Dominicé is an expert in microfinance investments and international finance and development. He started his career in finance, both on the wealth management side, in institutional asset management at UBS, and the corporate finance side, as a management consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers. He then joined the founding team at BlueOrchard Finance to launch the first private wealth manager dedicated to microfinance investments, where he served as the CFO for three years. He helped the firm gain an international aura by leading the launch of the first microfinance structured bonds in the capital markets in 2004. He then co-founded Symbiotics, where he initially served as a business development manager, and prior to being elected CEO in 2008.


Bertrand Perez

COO & Managing Director Libra Association

Bertrand Perez is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Association. With more than 25 years of engineering and technical management experience in payments and telecoms, Bertrand has led global engineering and operations teams of all sizes. Most recently he was Senior Director of Payments at PayPal, where he was responsible for the development and maintenance of several core components of the company's payments platform. Prior to his time at PayPal, Bertrand held executive and senior technical management positions at Ericsson, as well as startups like Index Multimedia and Zong.

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Fabio Sofia

Managing Director - Asteria Investment Managers

President - Sustainable Finance Geneva

Fabio Sofia has dedicated his career to develop and promote impact investing strategies. He started at the Swiss private bank Lombard Odier, then worked for the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs for human rights security, and then joined the founding team of Symbiotics, a world leader in microfinance emerging debt investments. In 2018, he moved to Wecan, a swiss digital finance company active in crowd-funding and blockchain solutions where he designed and developed successfully one of the first asset-backed token investment platform in the world. In December 2019, he joined the newly created impact investing company Asteria Investment Managers as Managing Partner. In parallel, he is also President of Sustainable Finance Geneva.


Cameron Stevens

CEO & Founder

Prodigy Finance

Cameron Stevens is a serial entrepreneur who focuses on social entrepreneurship and FinTech. He came up with the idea of Prodigy Finance as he was an international postgraduate student who experienced challenges funding his degree. Cameron knew his INSEAD classmates were ideal candidates for low-interest loans. But while talent is borderless, and evenly distributed in the world, access to finance is not. Prodigy Finance has since revolutionised international postgraduate student loans, addressing the social and geographical inequalities that exist when accessing finance. To date, Prodigy Finance has originated more than US$900 million of loans to over 18,600 students around the world.

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18:15 - 18:40

Doors open & welcome

18:40 - 18:50


18:50 - 19:05

Addressing global humanitarian issues through innovative   financial models


Keynote Speaker: Dr. Maximilian Martin, Global Head of Philanthropy - Lombard Odier

19:05 - 19:55

Impact investing through private debt: Social impact and role of digital technologies in addressing financial inclusion issues


Moderator: Dr. Michel Girardin, Partner - MacroGuide LLC & Lecturer in Finance - University of Geneva


  • Roland Dominicé, CEO & Co-founder - Symbiotics

  • Dr. Maximilian Martin, Global Head of Philanthropy - Lombard Odier

  • Bertrand Perez, COO & Managing Director - Libra Association

  • Fabio Sofia, Managing Director - Asteria Investment Managers & President - Sustainable Finance Geneva

  • Cameron Stevens, CEO & Founder - Prodigy Finance

19:55 – 20:00

Closing remarks

20:00 - 21:30

Networking cocktail



Théâtre Les Salons
Rue J.-F. Bartholoni 6
1204 Genève

Photo Gallery

Press coverage

With the support of

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