Feisal Hussain, Team Leader

Feisal Hussain has over 25 years international development and investment experience, with focus on financial services and livelihoods. Prior to joining Business Finance for the Poor in Bangladesh, Feisal oversaw UNCDF’s programming in Asia, developing and leading UNCDF’s largest regional portfolio in the financial sector.

Before UNCDF, Feisal ran a development consultancy in the UK, designing and evaluating projects mostly in Asia and advising some of the largest donors, not-for-profit organisations, and microfinance institutions such as UNDP, DfID, ASA, Oxfam, Save the Children, Care International, and ActionAid. Before this, he spent 5 years designing and project-managing economic livelihood projects globally for ActionAid International, and he served for four years as ActionAid’s country director in Bangladesh.

Before ActionAid, Feisal spent several years designing and managing microfinance programmes at the retail and meso levels through policy research and advocacy. His initial focus was in Bangladesh in the early 1990s, then Asia more generally. Before joining the development sector, Feisal worked in the City of London in the late 1980s in retail banking and then in wealth management.

Feisal holds a Masters in Development from the University of Leeds and a Bachelors in Business from Middlesex University.

Dr Mohammed Reazul Islam, Policy and Technical Advisor

Dr Mohammed Reazul Islam has over 35 years of experience at the World Bank, IFC, DFID, DFID supported projects and Government and research institutions. His experiences are mainly in private sector development and business reform and promotion in South Asia and Africa. He has worked extensively in business reforms and their implementation. He has also worked in the financial sector, both in formal and informal finance.

Dr Islam holds a Ph.D in Development Economics from Strathclyde University, a Masters in Technological Economics from Stirling University, and a Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering & Textiles from Leeds University.

Md. Arafat Hossain, Challenge Fund Manager

Arafat Hossain has more than 13 years’ experience in developing and implementing private sector development programs with focus on ‘markets for the poor’ methodology and challenge funds for the technology, agrarian and financial sectors across south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Arafat’s work includes regulatory reform, policy advocacy, ICT, agriculture, financial inclusion, off-grid power, waste management and public service innovation project design and implementation.

Prior to joining Business Finance for the Poor in Bangladesh, Arafat developed and led portfolios relating to challenge funds, access to finance, and access to technology for projects implemented by IFC-WB, Swisscontact and Coffey International Development.

Arafat holds two Masters degrees in Development Studies and Sociology and a Bachelors in Sociology from Dhaka University.

Rashed Al Hasan, Policy Manager

Rashed Al Hasan leads the programme’s Policy Component, which works for policy and regulatory reforms through evidence-based policy studies. It also includes development of a National Financial Inclusion Strategy for Bangladesh, conduct policy research relevant to access to finance of MSEs, and policy advocacy and regulatory reforms. Mr. Hasan has more than 15 years’ experience in financial inclusion, access to finance, private sector and financial sector development. He has expertise in micro, small, and medium enterprise policy analysis and policy reforms.

Prior to BFP-B, Mr Hasan worked for Oxfam GB Bangladesh, International Network of Alternative Financial Institutions (INAFI) Bangladesh, Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) and Centre on Integrated Rural Development for Asia and the Pacific.

Mr Hasan also managed projects focused on remittances, enterprise development and microinsurance funded by DFID, EC-UN and OxfamNovib. He also completed IFC Bangladesh assignments on financial sector and SME financing, and microcredit regulatory authority on rating and auditing Issues for MFIs. He also worked with ActionAid Bangladesh on microinsurance, and with PKSF on advanced level microfinance training materials development.

Mr Hasan has a Masters in Development Studies from University of Antwerp’s Institute of Development Policy and Management, an MBA from North South University, and an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Jahangirnagar University.

Muhymin Chowdhury, Deputy Challenge Fund Manager

Muhymin Chowdhury has worked in the development sector for 10 years with a focus on initiatives that impact access to financial services. As the Deputy Challenge Fund Manager at Business Finance for the Poor in Bangladesh programme, Muhymin manages a portfolio of micro and small enterprise-centred projects focused on enhancing investment readiness, establishing last mile distribution channels, and developing new products and platforms.

Previously, Muhymin worked on product development and developing use cases for digital financial services (DFS) at mSTAR, FHI360. He was also involved in supply and demand side DFS studies in Bangladesh and Pakistan with MicroSave and Intermedia. Muhymin also worked with Shorebank International (now Enclude Solutions) and managed a $10m investment in bKash Ltd to strengthen the company’s capacity in the areas of strategic and operational planning, customer uptake, and building the agent network. At Shorebank, Muhymin also undertook portfolio reviews and studies of digital financial services in Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan.

Kazi Mahfuz, Deputy Challenge Fund Manager

Kazi Mahfuz Mamtazur Rahman has worked as Deputy Challenge Fund Manager since 2015. Previously, he served in senior managerial positions under consumer banking in Standard Chartered Bank Bangladesh for fifteen years. His experience covers branch banking, liability product design, branch sales and service management, payroll banking, customer relationship management, employee banking, sales team management, Islamic Banking products, sales and governance. He was also a member of Standard Chartered’s Bangladesh Country Leadership Team.

Kazi holds an MBA degree from Institute of Business Administration at Dhaka University and a BBA from Institute of Business Administration, Jahangirnagar University.

Redwan B Rokon, Monitoring, Evaluation and Challenge Fund Coordinator

Redwan B Rokon is the Monitoring, Evaluation, and Challenge Fund Coordinator. He has 4 years of experience working in development consulting and research, and conducting monitoring and evaluation for food security projects in Bangladesh. He has worked in Bangladesh, the United States, England, India and Myanmar.

Redwan has worked at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and USAID in Bangladesh, providing evidence-based policy recommendations to the Government of Bangladesh, local and international NGOs, USAID, DAI, and WFP. He also worked with Nathan Associates Inc. in Washington DC, providing econometric analysis to support several litigation and antitrust cases in the US and Canadian markets.

Redwan holds an MSc in Development Studies degree with distinction and high merit from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics, Econometrics and Mathematics from Middlebury College, USA.

Shamira Mostafa, Challenge Fund Coordinator

Shamira Mostafa is the Challenge Fund Coordinator at BFP-B. She has 7 years work experience in the develoment and private sectors in Bangladesh and the USA. Prior to BFP-B, she managed $1m of pro-poor market lead interventions at Katalyst-Swisscontact.

Shamira has been involved in developing underprivileged communities at different capacities for several years. She worked in a program supported by ‘Centre for Community Based Learning’ to advance math and reading skills of young learners in diverse communities of greater Boston area. Shamira was also a marketing associate for promoting food safety measures for a bio-technology company in Boston. She was also a corporate trainer for Verizon telecommunication to serve micro and small enterprises for accessing affordable telecommunication and IT facilities.

Shamira holds a Masters in Communication from Lasell College, Massachusetts and a Bachelors in Business from North South University, Dhaka.

Tanzila Tajreen, Policy Coordinator

Tanzila is the Policy Coordinator of BFP-B Policy Component with five years development sector experience. She assesses quality of policy studies reports, and she monitors progress of policy studies and organising consultations.

Prior to the BFP-B, Tanzila was a Senior Business Consultant of Agribusiness for Trade Competitiveness Project (Katalyst), and looked after cross-sector Local Agri-business Network strategic planning and implementation of activities, reporting, and communication.

Tanzila also managed a knowledge management platform, Market Development Forum, an association of INGOs working with the market development approach in Bangladesh.

Tanzila has a Masters in Development Studies from BRAC University.

Muazzem Ahmed, Finance and Administrational Manager

Muazzem Ahmed is the BFP-B Finance and Administrational Manager, where he communicates financial, budget variances, sub grantees milestone claim review and report results and trends to the Managers. He has more than 18 years of experience in finance, grants, administration and operational audit. He spent more than 10 years on financial and grants management of USAID-funded projects.

Muazzem has worked organisations including Pathfinder International –NSDP project, Winrock International, CCBA project and University Resources and Corporation LLc (URC), and TB Care-II project. He also has experience with projects funded by DFID, ECHO, CARE, ICCO, ILO, and WFP.

Muazzem holds a Master of Commerce in Management degree and has completed Chartered Accountancy course from Rahman Kashem Chartered Accountant Firm.

Malick Mahbub Al Hasnat, Finance and Administration Coordinator

Malick Mahbub Al Hasnat is the BFP-B Finance and Administration Coordinator. He worked for ActionAid Bangladesh for more than 15 years. Before ActionAid, he worked for the Systems Rehabilitation Project, part of the Bangladesh Water Development Board, Netherlands Technical Assistance Program funded by World Bank, EEC, Netherlands and government of Bangladesh for 7 years.

Malick specialises in administration, logistics, facilities management, financial management, safety and security management, and disaster management for projects by ActionAid, BWDB, DFID, ECHO, and UNDP. He has work experience in Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, UK and Thailand.

Malick holds a Master of Commerce in Management degree from University of Dhaka.