At Abraaj, we define Impact Investing as targeting investments that meet or exceed the financial return requirements of investors while also targeting and monitoring social and environmentally beneficial outcomes.
Our Impact Investing pillar encompasses our healthcare and clean energy platforms as we believe these are best delivered through an approach of doing well and doing good.
For a successful strategy to take root, we consider the following three characteristics:
- Shaping the investment eco-system: Given our local presence and deep understanding of growth markets, we are well placed to catalyze investment opportunities in this space and mobilize like-minded partners.
- Setting industry benchmarks: With our longstanding experience of measuring impact in our partner companies, as well as our industry participation in relevant forums, we are actively involved in creating benchmarks that will measure and monitor impact across our portfolio.
- Achieving scale: We believe it is important to achieve scale to demonstrate that impact investing can be material in achieving and accelerating inclusive economic growth and employment creation.
Successfully delivering an Impact Investing strategy will require innovative thinking and one that is founded on deep alliances with investors, industry players, foundations, thought leaders and academia. Our work in healthcare and clean energy, where we are putting significant amounts of capital to work, is founded on this premise which we define as ‘Partnership Capital’.
Take the opportunity in clean energy. 1.5 billion people are expected to join the higher energy consuming bracket by 2030. These individuals, in addition to existing customers, will need to access sustainable sources of clean energy as new economies industrialize and move up the value chain. We need to rethink traditional models of energy delivery and storage and invest in innovative technologies and systems to be able to meet this energy demand.
Healthcare offers a similar story and there is a US$ 1.8 trillion opportunity to develop new healthcare systems to offer a continuum of care in rural and urban communities. Integrated healthcare systems that deliver sustainable, affordable and high quality preventative and curative services are largely non-existent in growth markets, especially when it comes to tackling the rising prominence of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
By focusing on the challenges of delivering sustainable outcomes in healthcare and clean energy to growth market populations, we see both the fulfilment of economic imperatives and social needs and the creation of long-term investment opportunities.
Shifting to an impact-oriented way of thinking requires a mindset change from the top. This means private capital works with development finance, philanthropy and domestic resources in an innovative way to positively impact the lives of millions. Our work in healthcare and clean energy is founded on this premise.
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