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Aavishkaar’s Bharat Fund attracts $15.5 million from India’s Hero Enterprises

Hero, a leading industrial business group in India, is investing $15.5 million in Aavishkaar’s sixth fund as part of its foray into startup investing. “It is clear that for the entire country [of India] to develop, rural areas and underprivileged citizens must become part of the economic miracle, not through charity, but through real opportunities,”

Matt Damon’s Water.org secures $5 million for impact fund

Water.org’s WaterEquity subsidiary is raising its third impact fund to invest in microfinance institutions that lend to households for in-home toilets and water connections. That’s a $12 billion market globally, according to a Gates Foundation report. WaterEquity has secured $5 million in zero-interest debt from Bank of America for the planned $50 million WaterCredit Investment

Agora Partnerships facilitates variable-payment loans in Nicaragua

Agora Partnerships, a Latin America social-venture accelerator, is facilitating “variable payment obligations,” or VPOs, that tie loan repayment to free cash flow. VPOs help small businesses without fixed assets or loan guarantors get much-needed funds. For the Nicaragua effort, Agora, backed by USAID and the Argidius Foundation, has joined forces with a local bank, Banco

Cities shouldn’t try to imitate Silicon Valley to support startups

Cities shouldn’t try to imitate Silicon Valley to support startups. “They should be the best version of themselves,” writes Ross Baird, founder of Village Capital. Village Capital has dissected 26 local startup accelerator programs that adopted VilCap’s peer-review model to understand “what works in entrepreneur support.” Colorado, for example, is home to four of the top

Earth finance, Water.org’s third fund, Juiciero’s food for thought, The Brief Quiz No. 11

#Featured: ImpactAlpha Original Earth Finance: Bridging the private capital gap in conservation finance. For your Earth Day consideration: The $400 billion in private capital that is needed annually for large-scale conservation is eight times even generous estimates of total conservation financing. A gathering of conservation practitioners and investment experts at Credit Suisse’s New York headquarters

IntelleGrow to raise $100 million to meet capital demand from Indian social ventures

CEO Akbar Khan, the former GE executive who joined IntelleGrow in November, is charting an aggressive growth strategy for the company. The venture debt arm of India’s Intellecap Group plans to raise $100 million in debt and equity this year to finance young, high-risk and under-banked companies in social sectors in India. “As our customers grow, their

And then there were 73…Echoing Green finalists

Women Rising Take a peek at the list of 73 finalists for 2017 Echoing Green fellowships, and takeaways from a review of all 2,879 applicants, 44 percent of them women. One trend: a heightened focus on civil and human rights, especially for refugees and immigrants. Winners will be announced in June. This post originally appeared in ImpactAlpha’s