Knowledge Hub
Critical insights and guidance for the SGB sector.

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931 results found

"'Bridging the Divide: Women, Technology and Business Success,' in partnership with Intuit, highlights the key issues facing women entrepreneurs and outlines our calls to action for tackling them. The comprehensive report draws on responses from over 1,100 women across 81 countries. Identifying women’s common challenges and opportunities, the report casts a particular spotlight on the broader influence and potential of technology, such as AI, for women’s businesses, and resulting gendered social and economic outcomes."

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South African politicians frequently refer to entrepreneurship as a potential solution to the economy’s significant unemployment problem. In reality, many entrepreneurs need to come from townships. Numerous reports address challenges faced by South African entrepreneurs. What distinguishes this report from extant studies is that this report features the voices of entrepreneurs and entrepreneur support organisations (ESO) to vividly portray township entrepreneurs’ challenges through in-depth interviews. This report also aims to elucidate the factors that contributed to the success of exemplary township entrepreneurs despite existing challenges and other strategies that ESOs can employ to guide more entrepreneurs to emulate these success stories.

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The report by the Enrich in Africa Center (EiA-C) emphasizes the significance of funding for fostering innovation ecosystems in Africa and addresses the trends in funding activities from 2020 to 2023. It examines grant funding data from nine major funders, alongside insights from interviews with key stakeholders. The analysis encompasses both the broader innovation funding ecosystem and specific support for ecosystem activities and organizations. By providing data and intelligence, the report aims to empower both funders and recipients to build sustainable and impactful innovation ecosystems in Africa, highlighting EiA-C's role in facilitating collaboration and knowledge exchange among stakeholders.

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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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"SMEs are diverse in their size and nature, and their financing needs differ accordingly. Equity can be important, especially for firms with growth ambitions, but the focus of this paper is on lending. While British International Investment (BII) has 65 years of experience in supporting SME finance in developing economies, we focus here on the evolution of our approach to SMEs since 2012, and how our journey has led to our latest innovation: Growth Investment Partners (GIP), a new specialist SME financing business we have created in Ghana."

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"One of the ways to understand the success of impact investing firms is to examine how they add value to the social enterprises they invest. Did their investment boost social and/or environmental change? And what type of support, beyond financial capital, can they provide to enhance impact? Drawing on a design-based methodology, we seek to address some of these questions by developing a tool called the Impact Oriented Value Framework. Putting impact at the centre of the funds' purpose, the framework provides actionable solutions to infuse impact into investors’ non-financial support strategies and activities, enhancing their additionality to portfolio companies as well as their contribution to the impact ecosystem."

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"Using a unique sample of retail impact investors, this study evaluates how investors deal with the challenge of aligning their financial and their nonfinancial goals. We find that investors with stronger nonfinancial motives are more likely to expect the overperformance of an impact investment and the underperformance of traditional equity and bond investments than investors with weaker nonfinancial motives. This cross-asset relationship between nonfinancial motives and expected performance indicates that investors form expectations that fit with the investment decisions that their nonfinancial motives are likely to motivate. We also find that after experiencing losses, investors with stronger nonfinancial motives are less likely to revise their expectation that the impact investment will underperform and more likely to expect that the impact investment will overperform than other investors. Our findings provide further evidence that preferences can affect expectations, and challenge conclusions drawn from observed behavior regarding investors’ willingness to pay for impact."

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"Microfinance has gained significant attention as a social innovation, offering flexible and low-cost financial services to households who are otherwise excluded from formal financial services. Over the years, numerous research works have expanded the knowledge base of microfinance. Applying bibliometrics, we summarise findings from 1599 articles published between 1987 and 2022. Our performance analysis reveals insights into the research trend, including its geographical distribution, the theories under examination, and the most influential publications. More importantly, the knowledge foundation and thematic analysis categorize microfinance research into three broad themes, viz. impact of microfinance, management of microfinance and performance and efficiency of microfinance."

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"Endeavor Insight partnered with HSBC to examine the challenges that climate tech founders face as they scale their companies, and the opportunities for investors and supporters to help them succeed. This study demonstrates how global connectivity can further drive innovation and highlights what decision makers can do to better support female-led and minority-led companies."

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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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South Africa faces significant economic challenges, with youth disproportionately affected by high unemployment rates and limited economic participation. Townships, home to a significant portion of the unemployed population, are now focal points for addressing youth entrepreneurship as a solution. However, sparse data on township youth entrepreneurial activity hinders effective support strategies. This research indicates that proximity issues, such as isolation and lack of access to information, are key barriers for both youth entrepreneurs and business development support providers. Current support efforts often lack relevance and fail to target high-growth potential businesses. To improve outcomes, there's a need to shift focus towards reaching more youth entrepreneurs and tailoring interventions to their needs.

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This guide is intended as an explanatory memorandum surveying the current legal landscape and market standards in South Africa concerning impact investing as well as the current viable impact investment options. This guide will be useful to, amongst others, South African debt and equity investors, grant-makers, foreign investors, incubator/accelerator portfolio managers, small and medium enterprises and social enterprises. The guide examines the laws and policies governing impact investing in South Africa, as well as different types and sources of financing that can be accessed for impact investment, and introduces a term sheet and “dos and don’ts” in carrying out negotiations and drafting term sheets.

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