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Critical insights and guidance for the SGB sector.

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India needs a significant capital injection to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target by 2030 and deal with climate change. Impact investing, catalysing philanthropic and commercial capital, offers promise in addressing critical social challenges. Initiatives like the Social Stock Exchange (SSE) and regulatory amendments aim to increase and broaden the pooled funds available to social enterprises and help them scale. Given this context, ANDE South Asia produced this explainer in collaboration with TrustLaw to provide focused guidance on how local and foreign impact investors can leverage the SSE to make investments in social enterprises in India.

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Since its founding in 2009, the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) has tracked the state of the small and growing business (SGB) sector globally through its bi-annual State of the Sector reports.  One of the most dynamic markets for small business growth is South Africa. The South African entrepreneurial ecosystem requires innovative solutions to increase the available finance, improve access to markets, reduce bureaucratic burdens, and strengthen the capacity of small businesses and start-ups. This report examines the state of the SGB sector in South Africa as of 2023 by assessing the amount and type of financial support available to enterprises, the type of capacity development offered, and trends in the policy landscape that affect the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The report concludes by highlighting the activity of ANDE and its member

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This report provides insights into the state of social innovation and impact investment in India. The report analyzes the key trends and developments in the social innovation ecosystem in 2022 and highlights the opportunities and challenges for the sector. It provides a comprehensive overview of the impact investment landscape in India and assesses the performance of impact investment funds and organizations in the country. The report identifies the key drivers of the social innovation sector, including the growing focus on sustainability, innovation, and impact measurement. It also highlights the need for increased collaboration and knowledge sharing among stakeholders to address the challenges faced by the sector, such as the lack of adequate funding, regulatory barriers, and limited capacity for impact measurement. The report emphasizes the role of impact investment in driving social change and calls for greater support from the government, private sector, and civil society to foster the growth of the sector. It recommends the development of a conducive policy and regulatory environment for impact investment, the establishment of a dedicated impact investment fund, and the creation of platforms for knowledge sharing and collaboration among stakeholders. Overall, the report presents a positive outlook for the social innovation and impact investment ecosystem in India and highlights the potential for the sector to drive sustainable and inclusive development in the country.

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"The report highlights the struggle of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in measuring and communicating their contributions to climate adaptation and resilience, owing to complexity, cost, and the inadequacy of existing metrics. This leads to a gap in understanding the impact of their efforts. The study aims to identify solutions and principles to better measure climate resilience and adaptation in MSMEs, guided by the Climate Capital Network's Metrics and Measurement Working Group. It aims to identify the challenges faced by MSMEs in measuring climate adaptation and resilience, assessing the relevance of metrics for investors, and outlining comprehensive principles to gauge these aspects effectively. It stresses the complexity and multifaceted nature of climate resilience and adaptation. They highlight the discrepancy and complexity among existing indicator frameworks, hindering their usability and comparability. MSMEs face hurdles in accessing and utilizing these metrics due to cost, complexity, and limited visibility compared to larger enterprises. The study identifies ten patterns crucial for measuring climate resilience and adaptation, emphasizing social impact, environmental conditions, financial considerations, risk management, and governance mechanisms. Finally, it emphasizes the need for flexible, comprehensive, and accessible metrics to facilitate investor understanding and encourage private sector investment in climate adaptation and resilience solutions. There's a call for clearer, standardized, and practical metrics supported by case studies to guide MSMEs in demonstrating their impact effectively to potential investors. This comprehensive approach aims to bridge the gap between the desire for climate resilience investments and the challenge of measuring their impact."

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"Blended finance solutions offer the potential to combine development capital with a variety of financial instruments such as impact bonds, concessional capital, and risk mitigation structures. We consistently see that deployment of these instruments is limited because of the inherent complexity and cost. But more so, due to a lack of awareness and standardization among capital providers. Without addressing these core issues, enterprises are deemed too risky, and the potential for social and financial returns may not be realized. Through this report, we aim to raise awareness about the importance of enabling funding for social enterprises – understanding their unique characteristics and challenges in capital raising – and articulate the key issues involved in applying blended finance to SMEs. We hope to simplify current bespoke solutions to build replicable and scalable financing solutions. We propose solutions that include building capacity of enterprises, embedding sustainability into the design of instruments, simplifying impact management, and creating open databases on blended finance transactions."

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This learning brief summarizes lessons learned across two of ANDE's Advancing Women's Empowerment Fund (AWEF) cohorts in Africa and Asia. The eleven AWEF grantees had similar experiences across their different regions and  time periods, most notably in regards to the approaches and programming that are most successful and impactful in reaching women entrepreneurs. This evidence suggests that women entrepreneurs may face similar barriers to investment across varied geographies - and further, the solutions and programmatic adjustments that have found success may be more similar than we think.

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This report provides insights into the startup ecosystem of Bangladesh, first describing the limited access to capital and infrastructure, the lack of necessary skills, and the absence of a supportive regulatory framework that have impeded the growth and development of startups in Bangladesh. It aims to identify the current state of the startup ecosystem in Bangladesh, exploring the challenges faced by startups, and analyzing the trends in startup investment in the country. It points to the significant growth in the number of startups and the total amount of investment in the sector, along with the increasing interest of foreign investors in Bangladesh's startup ecosystem, and the need for policy reforms and infrastructure development as imperatives to create a more conducive environment for startups to grow. Finally, the report highlights the potential of the startup sector to drive economic growth and job creation in Bangladesh and calls for increased government support and private investment to foster the growth of the startup ecosystem.

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"This report is an output of the ANDE Gender Action Lab. Authored by Villgro and LEAD At Krea University, this report publishes insights from a survey of over 800 SMEs on how women entrepreneurs access finance in the country. Combining insights from the desk research, demand-side survey and supply-side key informant interviews, the report suggests recommendations across three verticals: program, process and product, with government initiatives as anchors for scaling up."

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"This report is an output of the ANDE Gender Action Lab. Authored by Villgro and LEAD At Krea University, this report publishes insights from a survey of over 800 SMEs on how women entrepreneurs access finance in the country. Combining insights from the desk research, demand-side survey and supply-side key informant interviews, the report suggests recommendations across three verticals: program, process and product, with government initiatives as anchors for scaling up."

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"Quando as empresas pensam em fazer boas compras, consideram planejamento, gestão de estoques, equilíbrio de tempos e momentos, condições de pagamento, evitar desperdícios, organizar a documentação e, o mais importante, a escolha de fornecedores, que envolve um dos canais de abertura da empresa a relações com outras empresas, outros empreendimentos. É a oportunidade de fazer com que boas compras sejam também boas relações e, assim, sejam boas desde uma perspectiva mais ampla: para as empresas sim, mas também para os fornecedores, para a sociedade e para o meio ambiente."

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"In 2016, the United Nations established the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”,1 with goal five focusing specifically on gender equality. While progress has been made, women and girls continue to face a myriad of barriers to achieve the same quality of life as their male counterparts, be it in education, political participation, or business investment to name but a few.

Women entrepreneurs are of particular focus in the international development community; while active in the entrepreneurial space, there is significant evidence that women business owners face unique challenges compared to men business owners - often overlooked in terms of investment and business support services. This is particularly pronounced in developing economies."

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This report establishes a baseline understanding of the state of green entrepreneurship in Kenya by assessing existing business models, the available financial and technical support for entrepreneurs, and key sectoral issues regarding the policy landscape and market opportunity. The purpose of the study is to inform decision-makers, such as policymakers, donors, investors, and business development service providers, of the primary trends, opportunities, and challenges in the green entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kenya.

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