BrandArena: BluePeak’s Inaugural Fund qualifies to contribute to 2X global gender finance challenge

Wednesday 9 March 2022

BluePeak’s Inaugural Fund qualifies to contribute to 2X global gender finance challenge

On the occasion of International Women’s Day (IWD) 2022, BluePeak Private Capital’s $200 million targeted impact-linked fund qualified for the 2X Challenge, in recognition of its work and further commitments to accelerate women’s economic empowerment and promote gender equality both at BluePeak and within its investee companies.

BluePeak Private Capital has committed to investing with a gender lens using the 2X Challenge criteria.  The 2X Challenge is a global gender finance initiative first launched in 2018 by the development finance institutions of the G7 countries, with the aim of mobilizing $15 billion by the end of 2022 to support projects that empower women and enhance their economic participation.

Specifically, the 2X Challenge’s $15 billion pledge seeks to provide a capital boost to women-centred projects in developing countries that improve access to leadership opportunities, quality employment, finance, enterprise support and products and services that enhance economic participation and opportunities.

Founding members of the 2X Challenge include CDC Group (UK), Proparco (France), JICA and JBIC (Japan), DFC (US), FinDev Canada (Canada), DEG (Germany) and CDP (Italy). The European Investment Bank was the first multilateral development bank to adopt and use the 2X criteria. BluePeak Private Capital is proud that four of its investors - CDC, DFC, EIB and FMO - are all members of the 2X Challenge.

“Evidence suggests that supporting women in business has a direct impact on economies achieving inclusive economic growth. We are delighted to contribute to the 2X Challenge, and by joining the 2X community, we deepen our commitment to supporting the UN SDGs 5 (gender equality) and 10 (reduced inequalities),” said Walid Cherif, Founder and Managing Director at BluePeak.

In December 2021, BluePeak committed US$ 15.0 million to Grit Real Estate Income Group, a female-founded and managed real estate company focused on Africa. At Grit, women make up 48% of managerial positions, 33% of the board and 50% of the total workforce, translating into full alignment with the 2X criteria. The transaction marks the inaugural investment from BluePeak’s impact-linked private capital fund.

To date, 40% of BluePeak’s workforce is composed of women who benefit from equal pay and career opportunities. The firm has also committed to creating more leadership positions for women and continuously driving gender diversity within the company and investment community to ensure gender parity across all business areas.

Jessica Espinoza, CEO of the 2X Collaborative commented: “As we work harder to move gender-lens investing into the mainstream, we are delighted to collaborate with BluePeak as the 2X Challenge drives more private capital to transform the social and economic value of investing in women.  

To this end, at the 2021 UN Generation Equality Forum, 2X Challenge members launched the 2X Collaborative, a leading industry body for gender lens investing, in partnership with Gender Smart and the Investor Leadership Network (ILN) of global pension funds. The 2X Collaborative now brings together the full range of investors deploying capital with a gender lens all over the world: DFIs/IFIs, public development banks, commercial banks, insurance companies, pension funds, private equity and venture capital funds, and other private sector investors.”

Jo Fry, Investment Director and Head of Intermediated Credit, CDC Group, said: “CDC is delighted to be supporting BluePeak’s journey to advance gender diversity as a 2X qualified fund. We hope that BluePeak’s commitment will be an example for other funds that adopting a gender lens approach is consistent with a commercial investment strategy.”

Edward Claessen, Acting as Head of Division, Equity, New Products and Special Transactions, European Investment Bank, said: “To achieve the Sustainable Development Goals we need to mobilise and leverage as much capital as possible for gender lens investment (GLI). In fact, the success of the European Investment Bank’s SheInvest initiative further illustrates the transformative potential of GLI, helping to build more prosperous and resilient communities for everyone. 

"As the first MDB 2X Challenge member, the EIB Global mobilized more than € 2 billion ($ 2.2 billion) in GLI since the beginning of the initiative in late 2019, providing African women with better access to finance, as well as dedicated coaching and tailored services and products, thereby unlocking much-needed business and social transformation potential. We are thrilled to count BluePeak among our partners that contribute to our achievements under SheInvest.”

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