Through 23 investments, totaling EUR 64 million, MASSIF concentrated its efforts in 2019 in supporting growth and job creation for fragile livelihoods and regions. New deals were signed in unbanked countries and/or fragile states such as Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of Congo, Palestine, Myanmar, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. While those types of investments come with higher financial challenges as well as considerable macroeconomic, environmental, social and governance risks, they are key for the creation of a positive investment track record in markets where it is needed the most.
Financial Inclusion at MASSIF also included technology and innovations, with new investments in the Fintech industry such as Accion Ventures Lab, Cathay AfricInvest Innovation Fund in Africa, Validus and Nomisma in India, Dopay in Egypt or Liwwa in Jordan.
Rural livelihoods were high on the agenda as well, with an investment in coffee smallholders' financing in Nicaragua and Maha, a microfinance institution focused on rural and agricultural lending in Myanmar and Agora, which provides on-lending to small farmers and entrepreneurs.
Several gender and youth lines were provided, such as to the Grofin fund targeting the African and Middle-East regions, the First Microfinance Company in Egypt and COFINA Senegal.
MASSIF also strengthened mobilization opportunities by providing two risk-sharing facilities: one to VisionFund in Ethiopia and one through the NASIRA program, for Tamweelcom to develop a loan portfolio serving Syrian Refugee Entrepreneurs.
Finally, MASSIF supported its clients and partners with 19 Capacity Development projects. Beside a Development Impact Bond to finance youth employment in Palestine, those mainly included development contributions. The latter targeted the inclusion of digital services, improvement of client protection practices and adaptation measures to serve high-impact market segments such as youth, rural populations, women or refugees.