Operating context

Since 1970, FMO has made a positive difference by enabling entrepreneurs in developing countries to build a better world. We create long-term value by investing in the private sector, addressing climate change, reducing inequality and supporting (in)direct jobs. 

Our mandate

FMO was established and receives government support to provide financial services that the commercial market does not (sufficiently) provide, or which are only offered on terms that do not fit in a solid business model. We do this without crowding out private parties.  

Our investment decisions are guided by three principles: 

  1. Additionality: We offer financial services to the extent that the commercial market does not or does not sufficiently provide them, or which are only offered by the commercial market on terms that do not fit in a solid business model. In addition, in exceptional cases, we may demonstrate additionality through our contributions to higher environmental, social and governance standards that are not required in the market, thereby achieving a transformation effect. 

  2. Mobilizing: We attract as much additional private sector funding as possible to maximize our development value. We also deploy our expertise to enhance development value with public funds. 

  3. Good governance: We apply the principles of good governance within all areas of our business operations. 

We invest in emerging markets and developing economies that are often characterized by a fragile private sector, little job security and/or high poverty rates. Our customers operate in volatile markets that are significantly impacted by macroeconomic trends like increasing commodity prices and foreign exchange fluctuations. We engage with our customers before and during the lifetime of an investment to understand their context and risks. This enables us to offer products and services that suit the needs of our customers. In turn, they go on a long-term journey with FMO towards positive social, environmental and economic change.  

Where we operate

Diversification is key to our risk management approach and allows us to limit the volatility of our portfolio. We invest in 79 countries across four regions: 1) Africa, 2) Asia, 3) Europe and Central Asia, and 4) Latin America and the Caribbean. 

We invest in sectors in which we can take a leading role, develop strong relationships and mobilize private capital, and that we believe are crucial for supporting decent jobs (SDG 8), reducing inequalities (SDG 10) and taking climate action (SDG 13). The sectors we focus on are: 

We also finance other sectors indirectly through our investments in financial institutions, and private equity (PE) funds, which further contribute to supporting jobs.  

Key stakeholders 

FMO operates in a diverse stakeholder environment. Stakeholders are individuals or organizations that are directly or indirectly affected by our operations, whether positively or negatively, or who may affect our ability to create value. We have identified the following stakeholder groups.  



Local communities

FMO colleagues and communities



Public and commercial mobilization partners

Academia and knowledge partners



FMO strategic investments


General public


Financial analysts