Naoko is an advisor and author in the area of microfinance, social entrepreneurship and impact investments. Her passion lies in promoting innovative social/business models that provide sustainable solutions to tackle poverty and in advocating a much more effective and efficient use of resources, especially capital.
In 2000, Naoko established NFK Felder Consulting to raise awareness on microfinance investments. In 2004, she joined the Board of Frey Charitable Foundation, a Swiss family foundation that focuses in social entrepreneurship. In 2010, she co-founded Socential Ltd/sosense.org, a Swiss social impact organization that intermediates between donors/social investors and social entrepreneurs. In 2014, she co-founded Karmafy, a marketing platform that leverages the opportunity for effortlessly doing good every day by bringing people and products together. She also serves as a member of the board of Barefoot College, as a member of the advisory board of B Lab Europe since July 2015 and as a member of the strategy board for Pioneering Ventures since September 2017.
Her first book Making Sense-Microfinance and Microfinance Investments, (2004, Murman Verlag) which is also available in German and Japanese was one of the first books on microfinance investments. Her second book “Microfinance and Beyond: Introducing microfranchising and social businesses” showcase the innovative social/business models that provide sustainable solutions to the problem of poverty. This book is also available in German and in Spanish. Her expertise and passion is promoting business models with a double bottom line (financial and social returns) and bridging the economic divide through the empowerment of entrepreneurs in emerging countries.
Prior to her specialization in microfinance and impact investments, Naoko worked for 16 years in senior positions in the financial industry. She worked for Baring Securities in Tokyo, then in Zurich as a fund manager for Japanese equities at Vontobel Asset Management and at Nomura Bank in Zurich heading the asset management department.
Born in Japan and raised in El Salvador and Guatemala, Naoko returned to Japan to attend the International Christian University in Tokyo where she majored in communication studies. In 2010 she attended the Executive Program in Social Entrepreneurship at Stanford Graduate School of Business. She speaks fluent English, Spanish and Japanese and has a good knowledge base of German and Italian. She has been living near Zurich since 1988.