Expansion of prestigious women empowerment fund

05/09/2019 News Releases

jack-young-8rvimo16en0-unsplash

News release

Tokyo/Zurich, 5 September 2019 – Swiss based impact investor BlueOrchard Finance (“BlueOrchard”) is pleased to announce the expansion of the Japan ASEAN Women Empowerment Fund (“JAWEF”). Following the success of JAWEF, the fund will be increased to USD 241 million to address the significant gap of financing women in Asia, increasing its outreach to 700,000 women in need.

JAWEF was launched in 2016 with the appreciation of the Japanese Government as the first fund of its kind focusing on empowering women in Asia. The fund has been highly effective in mobilizing private commercial capital and delivering on all its impact objectives, reaching out to approximately 230’000 female micro entrepreneurs by financing 21 microfinance institutions across 7 countries.

Building on this success, JAWEF will double in size and reach USD 241 million. Its investment objective, to provide senior loans and subordinated debt to financially sustainable and socially responsible microfinance institutions focusing on female borrowers, remains unchanged; as does the fund’s initial lifetime of 8 years.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), as well as leading Japanese institutional investors, among them Sumitomo Life Insurance Company, support the fund’s expansion by increasing their participation on a pro rata basis. Furthermore, the renowned Sasakawa Peace Foundation will participate as new partner and investor.

I am pleased to see how an initiative we launched three years ago has proven that providing financial opportunities to women is a very powerful tool for fostering gender equality and women empowerment. The expansion of JAWEF will make an important contribution to further closing the credit gap for women in Asian countries and supporting their economies”, said the office of the Prime Minister of Japan.

With more than 50% of total fund assets coming from private investors, JAWEF has been a prime example for blended finance-structured funds and has proven that impact investing has reached the mainstream. We are very honored and proud to be the fund manager of this successful, benchmark-setting initiative,” said Peter A. Fanconi, BlueOrchard’s Chairman of the Board.

We are excited to see JAWEF attracting strong demand from private investors, which reflects that the fund presents an excellent opportunity for investors to achieve financial returns while making an impact,” said Patrick Scheurle, CEO of BlueOrchard.

 

About BlueOrchard Finance Ltd

BlueOrchard is a leading global impact investment manager. The firm is dedicated to fostering inclusive and climate-smart growth, while providing attractive returns for investors. BlueOrchard was founded in 2001, by initiative of the UN, as the world’s first commercial manager of microfinance debt investments. Today, BlueOrchard provides investors around the world with premium investment solutions, including credit, private equity, and sustainable infrastructure. Being an expert in innovative blended finance mandates, the firm is a trusted partner of leading global development finance institutions. With a major global presence and offices on four continents, BlueOrchard has invested to date more than USD 6bn across 80 emerging and frontier markets, enabling tangible social and environmental impact. BlueOrchard is a licensed Swiss asset manager of collective investment schemes authorized by FINMA. Its Luxembourg entity, BlueOrchard Asset Management S.A., is a licensed UCITS management company as well as a licensed alternative investment fund manager (AIFM) authorized by CSSF. For additional information, please visit: www.blueorchard.com.

For further information, please contact:
Tahmina Theis
+41 22 596 47 69
tahmina.theis@blueorchard.com

Disclaimer:
The information in this document was produced by BlueOrchard Finance Ltd (“BOF”) to the best of its present knowledge and belief. However, all data and financial information provided is on an unaudited and “as is” basis. The opinions expressed in this document are those of BOF and its employees and are subject to change at any time without notice. BOF provides no guarantee with regard to the accuracy and completeness of the content in this document and BOF does not under any circumstance, accept liability for any losses or damages which may arise from making use of, or relying upon any information, content or opinion provided by BOF in this document. This document may contain references or links to other documents and websites and BOF has not reviewed such other documents and websites and is not responsible in any way in relation to the content of such documents and websites.  
The information in this document is the sole property of BOF unless otherwise noted, and may not be reproduced in full or in part without the express prior written consent of BOF.
All investments involve risk. We note specifically that past performance is not an indication of future results. Emerging markets impact investments involve a unique and substantial level of risk that is critical to understand before engaging in any prospective relationship with BOF and its various managed funds. Investments in emerging markets, particularly those involving foreign currencies, may present significant additional risk and in all cases the risks implicated in this disclaimer include the risk of loss of invested capital.
The materials provided in this document are for informational purposes only and nothing in this document can be construed as constituting any offer to purchase any product, or a recommendation/solicitation or other inducement to buy or sell any financial instrument of any kind and shall not under any circumstances be construed as absolving any reader of this document of his/her responsibility for making an independent evaluation of the risks and potential rewards of any financial transaction. We note in particular that none of the investment products referred to in this document constitute securities registered under the Securities Act of 1933 (of the United States of America) and BOF and its managed/advised funds are materially limited in their capacity to sell any financial products of any kind in the United States. No investment product referenced in this document may be publicly offered for sale in the United States and nothing in this document shall be construed under any circumstances as a solicitation of a US Person (as defined in applicable law/regulation) to purchase any BOF investment product.
The information provided in this document is intended for review and receipt only by those persons who are qualified (in accordance with applicable legal/regulatory definitions) in their respective place of residence and/or business to view it, and the information is not intended under any circumstances to be provided to any person who is not legally eligible to receive it. Any recipient of information from this document who wishes to engage with BOF in furtherance of any transaction or any relationship whatsoever must consult his/her own tax, legal and investment professionals to determine whether such relationship and/or transaction is suitable. 
By no means is the information provided in this document aimed at persons who are residents of any country where the product mentioned herein is not registered or approved for sale or marketing or in which dissemination of such information is not permitted.
BOF disclaims all liability for any direct or indirect damages and/or costs that may arise from the use of (whether such use is proper or improper), or access to, this document (or the inability to access this document).
Copyright © 2019, BlueOrchard Finance Ltd. All rights reserved.

  • PDF version