Karen Wilson from OECD talking at the impact investment event. Photo © by Jakob Brodersen / access2innovation

Bridging the funding gap

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Last Friday’s impact investment event at Industriens Hus in Copenhagen brought together investors, foundations, companies, researchers and NGOs to sketch the future for impact investing.

More than 70 representatives from financial institutions, private companies, NGOs and universities gathered at Industriens Hus on Friday, April 26th to discuss various possibilities of creating impact investment cases.

Currently, public funding from Danida, IFU and the SDG Investment Fund focus only on known technology from established companies. The Danish Business Authority supports new innovations, but is very limited when it comes to developing world countries.

Private Danish investors and venture funds as well as funds and family offices lack high quality business cases and knowledge about the risks, impact and return on investment opportunities in developing countries.

This means that there is no financial eco system to support the solutions that have been developed by cross-sector partnerships and innovative companies, solutions that target some of the World’s most pressing challenges; poverty, hunger, population growth, climate change and clean water.

“The challenges are massive. If we are ever going to meet them, we have to develop a functioning financial ecosystem that supports the development much more efficiently than today. We are currently working on a chain of different financial solutions to help establish that environment,” says access2innovation CEO Jacob Ravn.

Guided by speakers and moderators from Danida, OECD, Clarmondial AG, Danish Red Cross, COOP, DCA, Keystone, WWF, IFC and access2innovation, the participants discussed the solutions that have been suggested and developed by access2innovation.

One of the key challenges is to phrase a joint narrative for impact investment that enables the various partners to merge their understanding of how the SDG goals can be made operational, tangible and verifiable.

With input from the discussions and ongoing contributions from access2innovation members, the solutions will be developed further before they are presented later this year.

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