Gender Smart | April 5, 2022

Women’s World Banking raises $103 million to invest in financial inclusion for women

Roodgally Senatus
ImpactAlpha Editor

Roodgally Senatus

ImpactAlpha, April 5 — New York-based nonprofit Women’s World Banking has raised $103 million for its second fund to invest in providers of inclusive financial services in emerging markets focused on women as customers and employees.

The fund has made five investments to date, including Kenyan farmers’ insurance startup Pula, Columbian community lender Aflore and Sitara, which offers mortgage finance for low-income households in India.

Women’s World Bank Asset Management will manage the fund, which has been approved as a 2X Flagship Fund, a gender-smart initiative ​​(see “Development financiers seek to hook private investors on gender-lens investing). Another 2X Flagship Fund, Singapore’s Insitor Impact Asia Fund, last month raised $42 million.

Catalytic capital

The European Union and Germany’s Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development provided first-loss capital and funding for technical assistance for portfolio companies to meet gender-lens objectives.

The Women’s World Banking fund secured commitments from European Investment Bank, Soros Economic Development Fund, DFC, KfW and other impact and institutional investors. The Visa Foundation provided a $20 million grant to Women’s World Banking in 2017.