International Finance Corporation (IFC)

Principal Investment Officer (Housing Finance)

International Finance Corporation (IFC)

Job Description


IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest Global Development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In fiscal year 2019, we invested more than $19 billion in private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end Extreme Poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit

IFC has embarked on an ambitious new strategy to stimulate more investment activity, especially in Low Income Countries (LICs) and Fragile and Conflict affected States (FCS). This new strategy aims at creating our own opportunities for private investments in riskier markets by proactively working in these countries to create, deepen, and expand the markets themselves.

The Financial Institutions Group (FIG) is one of the major industry groups at IFC, responsible for managing roughly 40% of IFC’s overall business in terms of volume and capital at risk. FIG engages in a wide range of sub-sectors including Microfinance, SME, Gender, Climate, Insurance, Capital Markets, Housing, Distressed Assets, and other areas, with both investment and Advisory Services delivered to IFC’s clients through IFC’s global network.

IFC's priorities in FIG as an industry group are: (i) grow investment and advisory solutions in the region, and achieve strong profitability and impact (ii) build new and nurture existing Client Relationships to make IFC the preferred partner for key clients (iii) manage portfolio of assets for strong profitability and impact; (iv) support local companies, while improving transparency and Corporate Governance; (v) catalyze foreign investment, including mobilizing B loans and parallel loans; (vi) introduce and develop new financial solutions, products and platforms; (vii) build long-term partnerships with strong regional players and (viii) develop client, sector and country-level solutions through upstream and downstream interventions that can be scaled and replicated; (ix) be a thought leader and innovator of products and client solutions globally.

As part of its Housing and Capital Markets strategy, the Global FIG Team seeks to increase the availability and affordability of residential housing in developing countries. It does so by introducing a steady source of new housing finance product ideas, capital markets solutions, technical assistance, strategic formulations, policy, procedures and effectiveness measures to better meet client requirements and leverage IFC’s own resources.

FIG’s Global Team is seeking a Principal Investment Officer with significant market and industry experience in housing and capital markets, to help grow and develop its business in emerging markets, in particular in Asia and Africa. The position will be based in Washington, DC.

Role & Responsibilities:

The responsibilities of the function include but are not limited to:

  • Lead a team of Senior Housing Specialists based in IFC’s regional offices and officers in Washington, DC.

  • Lead the implementation of the Housing Sctor Deep Dive, the housing finance strategy and program, aiming to expand the availability and affordability of housing finance in emerging markets.

  • Lead the global team and collaborate with regional teams to identify capital market housing solutions for FIG clients, developing a strong pipeline of quality investment opportunities for IFC, through employing knowledge of housing and capital markets, and anticipating market trends. Focus on adding value to IFC’s clients, finding pragmatic solutions to sector challenges, and achieving sustainable development impact.

  • Develop capital markets solutions for housing finance, such as Covered Bonds and MBS.

  • Develop financing solutions for specific assets, such as green housing or distressed housing loans.

  • Help mobilize other investors alongside IFC.

  • Identify potential collaborations with other departments of IFC and with the Finance, Competitiveness and Innovation unit (FCI) and the Social, Urban, Rural and Resilience unit (SURR) of the World Bank. Evaluate markets for formal and informal sector housing construction and finance, identify viable entry points for IFC.

  • Develop strategic relationships with clients and government officials, support the development of marketing and training tools for housing finance. Manage client relationships.

  • Lead the supervision of Housing Finance projects, including client interaction, analytical assessments, on-site reviews and the preparation of internal project documentation for results, sustainability and development effectiveness.

  • Provide best-practice technical advice to IFC staff and external clients.

  • Mentor and coach less-experienced staff and help build talent and grow skill base of staff.

  • Build teams, network of peers and partnerships for success; and

  • Build IFC’s knowledge base for best practices in housing finance, participate in knowledge sharing and dissemination.

Selection Criteria

  • Master’s degree in finance, economics or other related areas; accreditation as a CFA or CPA is considered a plus.

  • Minimum 15 years of experience in finance, with evidence of growing expertise in Banking, financial institutions and finance related disciplines, including retail banking, housing finance and capital markets, real estate based lending, credit underwriting, portfolio supervision, regulation of banks or specialized mortgage lending institutions, familiarity with mortgage-related securities.

  • Strong financial and credit skills; demonstrated ability to structure a variety of complex financial instruments.

  • Ability to interact directly and independently with the senior management of potential clients, of financial and technical partners as well as senior government officials.

  • Knowledge and experience in international Economic Development and commitment to sustainable development.

  • Excellent strategic vision, business judgment and strong analytical and Problem Solving skills to identify issues and present creative, practical solutions.

  • Capacity to deal with conflicting priorities and deliver high quality work on schedule; facility to work successfully in multicultural teams and across boundaries.

  • Great team player, able to mentor and train more junior staff, able to build internal relationships with peers, as well as other key/relevant counterparts;

  • Excellent oral and written presentation skills in English are required; additional major language such as French or Spanish are desirable.

Poverty has no borders, neither does excellence. We succeed because of our differences and we continuously search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe.

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