19 December 2018


IFU has joined and signed the Development Finance Institutions' Gender Finance Collaborative to promote the integration of “gender smart” decision-making into investments.

IFU has joined and signed the DFI Gender Finance Collaborative supporting the development of shared financing principles, definitions and methodologies to promote the integration of “gender smart” decision-making into investment processes and operations.

The DFI Gender Finance Collaborative was launched on 2 November 2018 at the Gender Smart Investment Summit in London and consists of 14 Development Finance Institutions and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) like IFU are playing an important role in providing capital to support gender equality, the value of women in leadership, as entrepreneurs and women’s economic empowerment worldwide.

While each DFI is on its own journey with varying commitments and levels of capacity, the collective goal is to increase the strategic impact of investment capital toward women as business and fund leaders, entrepreneurs, a strong and valued workforce, consumers and community members.

– Gender equality, women’s access to healthy jobs, careers and financing are key issues to IFU. We have a role as a financial institution and through partnerships we can contribute with insights and knowledge to our portfolio companies. Through the Collaborative we can increase the positive impact to the lives and livelihoods of women and girls in our projects. Therefore we want to be part of this initiative, said Torben Huss, CEO of IFU.

Through dialogue and a shared commitment to action, the Collaborative is aiming to advance the standard and the vision for the future of gender smart investing and to move more capital, more strategically, from within the DFI community and private sector co-investors.

The group also seeks to support the development of the field by partnering with other relevant organisations, programmes and initiatives.

The activities include:

  • Developing principles, financing criteria and due diligence tools to guide investment decisions toward supporting gender equality and women’s economic empowerment in our portfolios
  • Sharing strategies, case studies and lessons learned from our portfolios to collectively build knowledge about best practices for gender smart investing
  • Continue to build and prove the business case for investing in women
  • Support increased numbers of women in leadership among investees by ensuring that an active effort is made to identify and consider qualified women candidates in recruitment processes
  • Raising awareness and collaborating with the wider investing community, investees and partner organizations with regard to actions and impact through effective communication

A Joint Commitment Statement for the Collaborative has been developed, agreed and signed by the members.

For more information, please contact Birgitte Bang Nielsen, Sustainability Director, member of the Collaborative steering group.