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The Collaborative, launched on 2 November, consists of 14 Development Finance Institutions and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Development finance institutions (DFIs) are playing an important role in providing capital to support gender equality, the value of women in leadership and markets and women’s economic empowerment worldwide.

While each DFI is on its own journey with varying commitments and levels of capacity, our collective goal is to increase the strategic impact of investment capital toward women as business and fund leaders, entrepreneurs, a strong and valued workforce, consumers and community members.

“Gender equality, enhancing the rights and the position of women and girls is extremely important to Finnfund. Therefore we want to be at the forefront in this initiative, aiming to strengthen the contribution development finance makes to the lives and livelihoods of women and girls,” says Jaakko Kangasniemi, CEO of Finnfund.

Through collaborative dialogue and a shared commitment to action, the collaborative is aiming to advance the standard and the vision for the future of gender smart investing and to move more capital, more strategically, from within the DFI community and private sector co-investors.

The group also seeks to support the development of the field by partnering with other relevant organisations, programmes and initiatives.

Some of our activities include:

  • Developing principles, financing criteria and due diligence tools to guide our investment decisions toward supporting gender equality, the value of women in leadership and markets and women’s economic empowerment in our portfolios;
  • Sharing strategies, case studies and lessons learned from our portfolios to collectively build knowledge about best practices for gender smart investing (and to continue to build and prove the commercial case for investing in women);
  • Support increased numbers of women in leadership among our investees by ensuring that an active effort is made to identify and consider qualified women candidates in recruitment processes that we oversee on behalf of our investee companies (for Board or Management Team positions);
  • Collaborating on gender smart co-investment opportunities;
  • Raising awareness and collaborating with the wider investing community, investees and partner organizations with regard to our actions and impact through effective communication; and
  • Developing a solid understanding of the organisations and individuals in the field who may be external resources for our organisations as we move to do more of this work with our investees.

For more information:

Kaisa Alavuotunki, Senior Development Impact Adviser, kaisa.alavuotunki(a)finnfund.fi, tel. +358 41 522 3693