USAID to help Asean enterprises through impact investment
Published on: Wednesday, December 10, 2014

BANGKOK: The US Agency for International Development (USAID) will help small enterprises access funding to strengthen poor and vulnerable communities in Asia through impact investment.USAID said it would contribute US$800,000 to the Singapore-based Impact Investment Shujog Pte Ltd (Shujog)'s Assistance for Capacity Building and Technical Services (ACTS) programme to aid 25 Asian social enterprises in five sectors—agriculture, health, education, energy and water security, for the next two years.

"USAID is eager to support the growth of social enterprises because they

offer an additional way to tackle some of the world's most pressing social and

environmental problems.

"With our partnership with Shujog, we can help social enterprises raise their capital and increase their impact on the lives of poor and marginalised people," said Michael Yates, Director of the USAID Regional Development Mission for Asia, in a statement today.

He said through ACTS, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan Chase and the Rockefeller Foundation, the programme will assist social enterprises attract investment, scale their businesses and increase their impact through an innovative approach to technical assistance.

"Through repayable advances and grants, ACTS offers funding for early-stage social enterprises to seek services so they can be ready to receive impact investment," he said.

Shujog's founder and chairperson, Durreen Shahnaz, said by using a partnership model with multinational donors and corporations, Shujog ACTS would unlock impact investment capital to grow social enterprises.

"Already in its first year of implementation, Shujog ACTS is catalysing over US$1 million in private capital to scale social enterprises that impact over 54,000 beneficiaries," Shahnaz added. –Bernama


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