News

Ms. Preeti Sinha, Investment and Development Banker, Begins Tenure as Executive Secretary of UNCDF

  • February 15, 2021

  • New York, United States

Ms. Sinha Brings Public, Private Sector Experience to Lead UNCDF’s Covid response, Support to LDCs

The United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), which makes finance work for the world’s 46 Least Developed Countries (LDCs), today announced that Ms. Preeti Sinha has commenced her tenure as its Executive Secretary. In taking the helm as the highest-ranking leader in the organization, she will lead UNCDF in its mandate to unlock public and private finance for the LDCs.

“With the excellent team at UNCDF, my aspirations are for the ‘C’ – the Capital at UNCDF – to be highly catalytic in mobilizing manifold the public and private finance for the LDCs it serves and in developing a new era of engagement with capital markets in 2021 and onwards,” said Ms. Sinha. She succeeds Judith Karl, who retired in February after concluding her 30-year career in the United Nations.

"I warmly welcome Ms. Sinha as she embarks on her new role leading the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF)," said UNDP Administrator Mr. Achim Steiner. "UNCDF’s support for the world’s Least Developed Countries is critical, and I look forward to continuing the strong partnership between our organizations into the future.”

“With the excellent team at UNCDF, my aspirations are for the ‘C’ – the Capital at UNCDF – to be highly catalytic in mobilizing manifold the public and private finance for the LDCs it serves and in developing a new era of engagement with capital markets in 2021 and onwards."

Ms. Preeti Sinha
Executive Secretary, UNCDF

Ms. Sinha brings 30 years of global experience spanning investment and development finance, defined by a track record of raising and managing institutional public and private development capital. She served as CEO & President of FFD Financing for Development LLC, a specialist development finance firm in Geneva focusing on resource mobilization, donor relations, innovative capital markets, partnerships, strategy & business development, and impact investment advisory to finance the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Ms. Sinha's role as CEO and President was built upon her experience as a pioneering Global Leadership Fellow at the World Economic Forum, on the Financing for Development Initiative with the UN FFD Office, where she worked on bringing public and private capital together.

As Executive Secretary, Ms. Sinha will oversee the organization’s efforts to deliver scalable impact in order to make the international financial architecture work for the world’s frontier and pre-frontier markets; with a specific emphasis on supporting sustainable development for women, youth, small and medium-sized enterprises, smallholder farmers, and other traditionally underserved communities. She will also lead the organization’s efforts to accelerate SDG achievement in the LDCs during the “Decade of Action,” launched in 2020 by the United Nations with the goal of achieving the SDG agenda by 2030.

“I warmly welcome Ms. Sinha as she embarks on her new role leading the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF). UNCDF’s support for the world’s Least Developed Countries is critical, and I look forward to continuing the strong partnership between our organizations into the future."

Mr. Achim Steiner
UNDP Administrator

Ms. Sinha will lead UNCDF’s work to harness the untapped growth potential of the LDCs, to enable and empower communities, local governments and small businesses to address the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic while building more resilient and inclusive economies.

As Executive Secretary, Ms. Sinha will oversee UNCDF’s “last mile” finance models that unlock public and private resources, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development. These work through three channels: (1) inclusive digital economies, which connects individuals, households, and small businesses with financial eco-systems that catalyze participation in the local economy, and provide tools to climb out of poverty and manage financial lives; (2) local development finance, which capacitates localities through fiscal decentralization, innovative municipal finance, and structured project finance to drive local economic expansion and sustainable development; and (3) investment finance, which provides catalytic financial structuring, de-risking, and capital deployment to drive SDG impact and domestic resource mobilization.

Previously, Ms. Sinha managed the YES Global Institute, a practicing private sector think-tank for socio-economic development in New Delhi, building the impact investment ecosystem in India. She also served in senior resource mobilization roles at the African Development Bank, including managing its ADF-13 Replenishment, raising US$ 7.3 billion from 27 donor countries. She has also led multicultural teams and worked in investment banking at HSBC, Rabobank, Lehman Brothers and JP Morgan in London, Hong Kong, Mumbai and New York.

Ms. Sinha graduated from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Executive Education program in Public Financial Management. She also holds a Master's in Global Leadership from the World Economic Forum and a Master's in Public and Private Management (MPPM)/MBA from the Yale School of Management (SOM). Ms. Sinha graduated from Dartmouth College with Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Computer Science.

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About UNCDF

The UN Capital Development Fund makes public and private finance work for the world’s 46 least developed countries (LDCs) to harness their untapped growth potential.

UNCDF offers “last mile” finance models that unlock public and private resources, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development.