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David Woods named managing director at Oikocredit

Social investor and worldwide cooperative Oikocredit has appointed David Woods as its managing director with effect from 1 January 2013.

Woods' appointment follows the pending retirement of Ben Simmes, who has been with Oikocredit for 16 years across a number of key roles.

Woods has extensive international business and leadership experience, having held senior positions in the banking sector and as an advisory board member to the European Institute of Interdisciplinary Research in Paris.

Oikocredit board president Salome Sengani says: "Mr Woods brings a wide range of skills and experience to the organisation and we believe his diverse background across complex, multi-stakeholder environments will contribute positively to Oikocredit's future.”

Woods began his career with Royal Bank of Canada, where he held several positions before moving to Dutch based financial institution ABN AMRO, where he stayed for 20 years.

His roles with ABN AMRO included global head of e-commerce for financial markets, country head for Japan and Sweden and later COO/CFO for the Middle East.

Before joining Oikocredit, Woods held leadership positions in various financial organisations in the United Arab Emirates, including chief executive of a regional investment bank.

His appointment as Oikocredit managing director will see Simmes move to a new role in the microfinance sector as chairman of NPM, Platform for Inclusive Finance, in the Netherlands.

Oikocredit is one of the world's largest sources of private funding to the microfinance sector, providing credit and equity to small businesses through microfinance institutions across the developing world and directly to trade cooperatives, fair trade organisations and small-to-medium sized enterprises.

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