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The Fourth Annual Contest «Russian MicroEntrepreneurship Awards of Citi Foundation»

 Provisions of the Contest — Download  >  (DOC, 136 КБ)

On September 22, 2008, the Citi Foundation and the Russian Microfinance Center (RMC) announced the start for receiving applications to compete in the fourth annual Citi Russia Micro-Entrepreneurship Awards, supported by the Citi Foundation.

The contest is aimed at encouraging successful micro-entrepreneurs and most efficient and effective organizations involved in micro-finance activities all over Russia, and raising awareness about micro-finance on the part of both government agencies and the general public.

According to RMC, the market for micro-finance services has grown fourfold during 2003 and 2007; micro-finance loans are currently issued worth more than $ 900 million, while $600 million of private savings have been mobilized, and the client base totals around 650,000 customers. Last year, the Citi Foundation increased the Platinum Award to 100,000 rubles, while the total volume of the awards fund was brought to twice the size of the previous year’s fund. More than 150 nominees from 45 of the Russian regions took part in the contest in 2007. These were entrepreneurs who used micro-loans to create their own, socially-significant, businesses. The overall success of the contest in 2005-2007 showed that micro-finance has a huge potential for development and public recognition.

In additional to the traditional awards for ‘The Best Micro-Enterprise Employer’ and ‘The Best Individual Entrepreneur’, winners of new awards will also be announced this year: ‘The best loan manager’, ‘The best microfinance organization of 2008’ and incentive awards «For the highest transparency of the activities», «The best representative of businesswomen in the sphere of microfinance», «For the contribution to the development of microfinance in the RF.

The Contest organizers are the National Association of Microfinance Market Stakeholders (NAMMS) and Russian Microfinance centre under financial support of Citi Foundation, US-Russia Entrepreneurship Centre and Clifford Chance. The Contest is carried out under information support of the RF Chamber of Commerce and Industry, OPORA of Russia and the Expert Council on Microfinance and Funding for Small Business, attached to the RF Ministry for Economic Development. The competition is supported by Russia’s Federal Council and the State Duma.

Anastasiya Podborskaya,
Olga Zharkova
Russian Microfinance Centre
tel. +7(495)258-6831, 258-8705

Tatyana Avramenko,
ZAO CB “Citibank”
tel. +7 (495) 643-1426

Additional information:
The Russian Microfinance Center (RMC) was established in July 2002 in response to the need for an organization which would represent and advocate for the interests of the entire microfinance community. RMC serves as a resource center for Russia’s microfinance industry and a national forum for its interaction with the government, public, and investors; it advocates for an enabling legal environment for microfinance; offers training and professional consulting services to microfinance institutions, and promotes national microfinance standards.

Noncommercial partnership “National Association of Microfinance Market stakeholders” was established in 2006. The NAMMS activities are focused on development of microfinance direction in the activities of diverse lending institutions through the efforts of professional organizations who represent the interests of microfinance market stakeholders. The NAMMS is unique discussion and negotiation forum for the organizations who are involved in microfinance activities, investors, representatives of public authorities and other participants of microfinance relations.

Clifford Chance, an international law firm, was established in Moscow in 1991. Today it is one of the world's leading law firms in all major practice areas, and one of the largest law firms in Moscow and the CIS. Clifford Chance Moscow has 16 partners and more than 160 associates, including professionals who are qualified to practice in Russia, England, Germany and the USA. Clifford Chance lawyers advise financial institutions, corporations, state and regulatory bodies on everyday and complex deals in the following practice areas: real estate, energy and utilities, corporate/M&A, capital markets, banking and finance, litigation and dispute resolution, tax, and environmental issues. Its global presence (3.800 legal advisers, 30 offices in 21 countries) in the Americas, Asia, Europe, and in the Middle East allows Clifford Chance to help its clients in all countries, tailoring its advice to regional specifics.

The U.S. Russia Center for Entrepreneurship (CFE) is a catalyst organization advancing the role and scope of entrepreneurship in Russia through network learning events that target the needs of growth entrepreneurs. CFE’s educational workshops are specifically developed for entrepreneurs who have both the desire and ability to expand their growing companies, and who seek additional knowledge to attain this goal. This knowledge may include how to find sources of investment, present to investors, and implement sound corporate governance. It may also include developing the skills entrepreneurs need to further their company’s success, such as leadership, recruiting and retaining high-quality talent, cash flow and financial management, and strategic planning. CFE invites entrepreneurs to participate in our policy and networking events that bring entrepreneurs together with other entrepreneurs, service providers, policymakers and investors to discuss and learn about such topics as capital formation, branding, the legal and regulatory environment, and selling one’s company. Network learning programs are interactive and can take the form of guest speaker forums, entrepreneur exchanges, panel presentations, and conferences. CFE is an initiative of the U.S. Russia Investment Fund (Delta Private Equity Partners), a leading private equity fund in Russia, and managed in cooperation with the Beyster Institute at the Rady School of Management, UC San Diego, a foremost educational organization dedicated to building high performing entrepreneurial organizations.

The Citi Foundation is committed to enhancing economic opportunities for individuals and families, particularly those in need, in the communities where we work so that they can improve their standard of living. Globally, the Citi Foundation focuses its strategic giving on: 1) Microfinance and Microentrepreneurship, 2) Small and Growing Businesses at the next stage of development that create employment and support economic growth, 3) Education with a focus on increasing the supply of high quality basic education in local Citi markets internationally, and in the U.S. increasing young people's access to college, 4) Financial Education and Asset Building to help individuals and families develop the skills and incentives to gain financial stability, grow and preserve financial assets, 5) The Environment with a focus on sustainable enterprises that create jobs and support economic development while preserving the environment. For detailed information please visit

Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 100 countries, providing consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and lending, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, and wealth management. Citi’s major brand names include Citibank, CitiFinancial, Primerica, Smith Barney, Banamex, and Nikko. Additional information may be found at or

The results of the contest will be drawn on December 10, 2008.
The award ceremony will take place in Moscow after December 16, 2008.

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