FMO invests USD 10 million into eco.business Fund to boost biodiversity conservation in sub-Saharan Africa
The eco.business Fund has received a commitment of USD 10 million from longstanding partner FMO, the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank, for its recently launched sub-Saharan Africa sub-fund. Through the investment, the partners aim to support business and consumption practices in the region that contribute to the conservation of biodiversity and sustainable use of natural resources. The sub-fund will invest in the four priority sectors of the eco.business Fund, which are agriculture, fishery (including aquaculture), tourism, and forestry.
FMO has been a partner of the eco.business Fund since 2015 and has invested USD 25 million into the sub-fund for Latin America and the Caribbean so far. The new sub-fund for sub-Saharan Africa was formally launched at the beginning of 2020 and has identified strong potential in the region for the fund’s approach to biodiversity protection.
“Sub-Saharan Africa’s immensely rich animal, plant, and marine biodiversity not only provide critical ecosystem services, it also drives the continent’s economy. But this is being threatened by a combination of factors, such as deforestation and climate change. The eco.business Fund recognizes the importance of protecting these unique ecological landscapes as it affects livelihoods, water supply, and food security,” says Dr. Jens Mackensen, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the eco.business Fund: “In this endeavor, FMO is and has always been an invaluable partner of the eco.business Fund, and we are grateful for their continued support in our mission to preserve the biodiverse areas of this region. We are proud to be mobilizing resources for positive impact together, which will not only fulfil our mandate, but also contribute to achieving the SDGs.”
Linda Broekhuizen, Chief Investment Officer of FMO, stresses the importance of the partnership. “This fund allows FMO to contribute to biodiversity and sustainable use of natural resources, with is essential for a world in 2050 in which 9 billion can live well and within the means of the planet’s resources. We are happy to support our longstanding and trusted partner Finance in Motion with this new venture. The expansion of the eco.business Fund into Sub-Saharan Africa is a challenge, but we are optimistic that the results achieved with the LAC sub-fund can be replicated. Moreover, boosting green lending across the continent is a key priority for FMO.
About the eco.business Fund
The eco.business Fund aims to promote business and consumption practices that contribute to biodiversity conservation, to the sustainable use of natural resources, and to mitigate climate change and adapt to its impacts in Latin America, the Caribbean, and sub-Saharan Africa. By providing financing for business practices that conserve nature and foster biodiversity, the fund seeks investments with both environmental and financial returns. The eco.business Fund provides financing through three avenues: local financial institutions that are committed to the fund’s mission and which have the capacity to reach its target group; directly to its target group (i.e. companies and producers); and in the case of sub-Saharan Africa, to real sector intermediaries. The fund supports sustainable operations in the sectors of agriculture, fishery (including aquaculture), forestry and tourism. Target beneficiaries are those that hold an eligible sustainability certification or those taking out a loan to make eligible sustainable investments in their operations
Operating together with each of the two sub-funds, are two development facilities that provide high-impact technical assistance to investment partners and final borrowers.
An impact investment fund advised by Finance in Motion, the eco.business Fund was initiated by Germany’s KfW Development Bank and Conservation International with financial support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
The sub-fund for sub-Saharan Africa was formally launched in 2020 with initial funding from BMZ. It will actively contribute to the conservation of key biodiversity hotspots of which eight of the world’s 36 are in sub-Saharan Africa. The sub-fund has already received further funding from Finance in Motion.
The sub-fund for Latin America and the Caribbean has received funding from the European Commission as well as from numerous other prestigious development finance institutions and institutional investors.
For more information please visit www.ecobusiness.fund and follow us on Twitter @ecobusinessfund.
FMO is the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank. As a leading impact investor, FMO supports sustainable private sector growth in developing countries and emerging markets by investing in ambitious projects and entrepreneurs. FMO believes that a strong private sector leads to economic and social development and has a 50-year proven track-record of empowering people to employ their skills and improve their quality of life. FMO focuses on three sectors that have high development impact: financial institutions, energy, and agribusiness, food & water. With a committed portfolio of EUR 10.4 billion spanning over 80 countries, FMO is one of the larger bilateral private sector developments banks globally. For more information: please visit www.fmo.nl
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