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News by tag: ESG

How can investments for development increase in Switzerland?

Tuesday, 05 Jan 2016

Guest Blog Post by Magnus Berg Johansen about Workshop D1 at TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE 2015 on Development Finance and the role of the Swiss banking sector. The moderator Sabine Döbeli, CEO Swiss Sustainable Finance was joined on the panel by Patrick Elmer: Head Business Development at Blue Orchard, Christian Etzensperger, Head Corporate Development and Strategy at 
ResponsAbility Investments AG, and Andrea Heinzer: CIO and Partner at Obviam AG.
Views and opinions are that of the writer and are not the official views of TBLI CONFERENCE.

What are the main reasons for capital not to be allocated into development investments? And how come it is so that Switzerland with all its financial capacity does not generate new innovative financial vehicles?
These were some of the questions that were raised during the session that took a closer look at three different financial institutions that generate returns for their shareholder by investing in developing countries.

22645158683 41be54c087 zThe session started off with Patrick Elmer from Blue Orchard discussing the issues of why funds do not find the way into these types of vehicles – because there is enough capital.

Andrea Heinzer from Obviam AG then took over and presented some of the various challenges that exist and hinder more capital movemenet into impact investing.

Lastly, Christian Etzensperger from ResponsAbility demonstrated how a fund can generate an impressive 30 percent growth per year in assets under management, mainly by attracting funding from private sector. The fund is continuously growing, and this is demonstrated with ResponsAbility's plans of opening a new office on the African continent. According to Etzenserger, however, there is still a great need for financing to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
He showcased how the emerging markets need an annual SDG financing of USD 4,5tn, while the current assets under management of Swiss banking is at USD 6,7tn. At the same time, the annual transfer cost of the German unification was EUR 100bn. More specifically he showed the need within the various sectors in emerging markets.

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Impact Investing in Emerging Markets - What have we learned?

Tuesday, 05 Jan 2016

Guest Blog Post by Nada El Ahwal about a workshop (Session A2) at TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE 2015 about Impact Investing in Emerging Markets, and the lessons learned. The moderator, Gudrun Timm, Partner at Carpe Diem Partners, was joined on the panel by Charles-Antoine Janssen: Managing Partner KOIS Invest, Dirk Elsen: Director Emerging Markets Triodos Investment Management, Karsten Fuelster: Country Manager Germany, Austria, Switzerland at IFC, and Fabio Sofia: Executive Director Symbiotics Group.
Views and opinions are that of the writer and are not the official views of TBLI CONFERENCE.

A group of passionate impact investors sat round the same panel to exchange insights in what could be the trickiest part of an already TBLI EUR 15 Workshop A2tricky space: investing for social impact in emerging economies. Noting the stark differences in business practices, demographics, and regulatory conditions between emerging and developed markets, the investors shed light on the intricacies of simultaneously employing capital and driving social change in countries like India and Bolivia.

Charles-Antoine Janssen, the managing partner at KOIS Invest, an asset fund management firm, opened a lively discussion by asserting that India, as an example, was the perfect place for an investor to genuinely add value. “The workforce potential is amazing, recruits in India are working to provide a better life prospects for their families, and exhibit huge entrepreneurship and willingness to work” he adds, this creates an unparalleled potential to combine social return with financial gains.

Soon into the session, moderator Gudrun Timm, MD and partner at Carpe Diem Partners, posed an alarming statistic that capital outflows from emerging economies reached 1 trillion USD in 2015 (according to the IIC). Fabio Sophia, the executive director of Symbiotics Group affirmed, “the scary thing about this figure is that this is capital that is not invested in emerging markets, despite the huge growth potential that we can all recognize. This is a huge concern in terms of development and opportunity.” Certainly, fleeing capital highlights the political economy challenges of emerging markets, where investors look for developed markets for reasonably risk-adjusted returns.  

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