FINCA International has announced the launch of FINCA Ventures, an impact investing platform that provides patient capital and pre- and post-investment support to help early-stage social enterprises achieve growth and scale.
FINCA International supports innovative solutions to poverty in energy, water/sanitation/hygiene, education, health, agriculture and financial technology and has invested in several startups with a presence in African countries.
“For more than three decades, FINCA has given small loans to micro-entrepreneurs around the world,” said Rupert Scofield, President, and CEO of FINCA International. “
Founded in 1984 by John Hatch, and headquartered in Washington, District Of Columbia, FINCA International is a charitable institution which provides microfinance services to low-income entrepreneurs across Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, Eurasia and the Middle East and South Asia.
As a pioneer in microfinance, FINCA International created a sustainable and scalable social enterprise. Because of this, FINCA Ventures is uniquely positioned to help social enterprises grow faster and smarter and reach a bottom of the pyramid market more effectively and responsibly.”
FINCA Ventures aims to accelerate the growth of social enterprises developing goods that align with FINCA’s charitable mission, thus fostering a market for extremely affordable, high-quality and life-improving products and services for the bottom of the pyramid.
Over the past 18 months, FINCA Ventures has invested in six social enterprises that are serving emerging market customers, including Eneza Education, an edtech startup in Kenya, BioLite, a company that designs and manufactures clean-burning, electricity-generating cookstoves and solar home systems for off-grid households and Ignitia, a platform that sends hyper-local, highly accurate tropical weather forecasts to smallholder farmers via SMS to reduce risk and loss for better harvests.
“FINCA International is going beyond general financial inclusion and looking more deeply at access to basic services and the role finance can play,” said Ami Dalal, Vice President and Managing Director for FINCA Ventures.
“Combined, FINCA’s work in microfinance and social enterprise generates greater resilience and opportunity, and helps low-income families achieve a better standard of living.”
As part of the investment strategy, FINCA Ventures seeks likeminded partners for co-investment opportunities; an approach that will strengthen the investment by increasing the available capital and forging partnerships for catalytic impact.