Press Release | 22 Jan. 2020

Coalition of private and public sector launches SDG500, a ground breaking USD$500 million investment platform to accelerate progress towards the SDGs

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Davos, 22 January 2020 – A coalition of private and public sector organisations, including United Nations entities, non-governmental organisations and a private equity firm today announces the launch of SDG500 – a new investment platform to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This USD$500 million investment platform is the first-of-its-kind dedicated to helping achieve the SDGs. SDG500 will offer an exposure to six different underlying funds. Each of these funds is or will be managed by impact asset manager Bamboo Capital Partners.

The funds will use debt and equity to invest at Seed, Series A and Series B stages in hundreds of businesses in emerging and frontier markets. SDG500 aims to address the ‘missing middle’ financing gap that affects entrepreneurs in these markets, where growth is constrained by a lack of access to follow-on financing.

The funds will target businesses in the agriculture, finance, energy, education and healthcare sectors across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean and Pacific regions. There will also be a gender-lens focus and some of the funds will specifically invest in businesses that empower and provide jobs for women.

The funds composing the SDG500 platform each include a catalytic first loss layer designed to encourage and protect senior tranches of funding. Initial sponsors of the catalytic layers of the funds of SDG500 include the European Union, the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, the Governments of Luxembourg, Togo and Tunisia, CARE and the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.

The International Trade Centre has joined forces with CARE to establish the CARE-SheTrades Fund, one of the six Funds comprising the SDG500 Partnership, which will provide financing to businesses promoting gender equality through actions in the workplace, supply chain, women’s entrepreneurship and gender responsive products. With a target size of $75 million, a senior tranche of $60 million and $15 million as first loss, the CARE-SheTrades Fund will generate an expected rate of return of 7.5% to harness the power of the private sector in pursuit of SDG 5 on gender equality.

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