As the microfinance market continues to grow at an accelerating rate, so does the need for globally comparable credit ratings that assess the credit worthiness of the microfinance institutions (MFIs). The ability to map microfinance ratings to expected loss or probability of default would prove extremely useful to potential investors.
Moreover, Moody's and Kiva both recognize the opportunity Kiva presents; not only does Kiva partner with MFIs of the highest standards, but engages with local microfinance profesionals who understand the local market, can work with current MFIs and identify new ones.
Moody's is applying its experience in credit ratings and credit risk management to help Kiva's microfinance institution Field Partners enhance their lending practices and bring greater transparency to Kiva's online microfinance marketplace. Through a combination of in-kind services and direct financial support from the Moody's Foundation, Moody's has established the Moody's Field Specialist Program to deploy local microfinance professionals around the world, provide training to Kiva staff, and rate twenty Kiva MFI Field Partners – at no cost to Kiva.