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IDB Invest and OPIC Launch First Gender Lens Investment Fund for Latin America and the Caribbean


October 2, 2018

Buenos Aires – IDB Invest, the private sector institution of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the U.S. Government’s development finance institution, announced today an alliance for the creation of the first gender-focused fund for Latin America and the Caribbean for up to $200 million. The initiative, called Fund Mujer, is expected to be comprised of 30 percent debt and 70 percent equity.

The aim of the fund is to narrow the gender financing gap in Latin America and the Caribbean by supporting investment strategies focused on women-owned businesses, female entrepreneurs, and firms that generate jobs or consumer products for women.

"Women worldwide face a $320 billion shortfall in access to credit. In Latin America and the Caribbean, the region with the highest percentage of women-entrepreneurs, the business opportunity could reach more than $98 billion annually. It is not only about fairness, but about business success,” said IDB Invest Chief Investment Officer Gema Sacristan.

“With Fund Mujer, we are not only investing in women-owned and led enterprises. We are also investing in enterprises that provide quality employment and access to products and services that address critical barriers so that we may enhance women’s economic participation and success. With Fund Mujer we are moving beyond merely counting women; we are also valuing women,” added OPIC Managing Director for Global Women’s Issues Kathryn Kaufman.

The creation of the fund underscores IDB Invest and OPIC’s commitment to expanding financing options for women in business in Latin America and the Caribbean and builds on OPIC’s leadership in gender lens including through OPIC’s 2X Initiative, the criteria for which will be applied to this fund. The initiative will be carried out through a Request for Proposals to support one or more funds with a gender lens investment strategy. It is expected that the selected fund managers will be announced during the first quarter of 2019.

Learn more about Fund Mujer.

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About IDB Invest
IDB Invest, the private sector institution of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group, is a multilateral development bank committed to supporting Latin America and the Caribbean businesses. It finances sustainable enterprises and projects to achieve financial results that maximize economic, social and environmental development for the region. With a current portfolio of $11.2 billion under management and 330 clients in 23 countries, IDB Invest works across sectors to provide innovative financial solutions and advisory services that meet the evolving demands of its clients. As of November 2017, IDB Invest is the trade name of the Inter-American Investment Corporation.

About OPIC
The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) is a self-sustaining U.S. Government agency that helps American businesses invest in emerging markets. Established in 1971, OPIC provides businesses with the tools to manage the risks associated with foreign direct investment, fosters economic development in emerging market countries, and advances U.S. foreign policy and national security priorities. OPIC helps American businesses gain footholds in new markets, catalyzes new revenues and contributes to jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. OPIC fulfills its mission by providing businesses with financing, political risk insurance, advocacy and by partnering with private equity fund managers.