In emerging markets, the COVID-19 crisis presents an even greater economic challenge than in the United States. The American economy was the strongest in the world before the crisis. Even now, under widespread stay-at-home orders, US unemployment has risen to only 20%, whereas most emerging market countries started the year with formal unemployment rates well above 20%.
Almost overnight our external reality changed, and so did that of our entrepreneurs — and in a matter of weeks a lot of the impact we all have worked hard for the past many years vanished; revenues and profitability plummeted; people were furloughed, fired or salaries cut; investments ground to a halt.
The Aspen Network for Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), a membership organization for small and mid-sized enterprises in emerging markets, is a member of the Alliance and the R3 network launched by the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN). When the pandemic hit, ANDE looked for ways to support its members — which naturally meant reaching out to other organizations. Randall Kempner, ANDE’s Executive Director, is cautiously optimistic that the networks will make a difference, even if just to share best practices.
Within this COVID-19 crisis context, social impact organizations are scrambling to adjust their internal operations, continue fundraising and adapt their programming. The resulting changes will affect these organizations on practically every level – and impact measurement and management (IMM) is no exception. Matthew Guttentag and Mallory St Claire discuss the importance of IMM during this pandemic. They also suggest a few changes organizations can consider, and resources to help them make these adjustments.
The COVID-19 crisis is threatening small and growing businesses in low-income nations and the capacity development organizations (CDOs) they depend upon. ANDE's Matthew Guttentag and Dalberg's Kusi Hornberger, Mark Pedersen and Alekhya Sure offer up three categories of actions funders should consider to help CDOs overcome their financial challenges.
Like social enterprises, technical assistance providers are struggling amid COVID, but they have few or no new options for support. That can hurt fledgling entrepreneurs and put impact deals in emerging markets at risk. ANDE’s Matthew Guttentag and Dalberg’s Mark Pedersen offer up three actions investors can take to shore up these critical service providers.
Artemisia is a pioneering organization focusing on social businesses in Brazil. It seeks to attract and train qualified people to build and develop new business models that contribute to reducing socioeconomic inequalities.
Village Capital helps entrepreneurs bring big ideas from vision to scale. Their mission is to reinvent the system to back the entrepreneurs of the future. Their vision is a future where business creates equity and long-term prosperity. Since 2009, Village Capital has supported more than 1,100 early-stage entrepreneurs through their investment readiness programs.