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"This Guide was developed for impact and mission-driven investors (“Investors”) operating in emerging markets to provide concrete, practical pathways for investing with a gender lens. The adoption of Gender Lens Investing strategies amongst investors in emerging markets in turn increases the amount of capital deployed towards women-led and gender inclusive businesses. Specifically, this Guide offers pathways for investment professionals, limited partners (LPs) and general partners (GPs) at impact and mission-driven Venture Capital (VC) and Private Equity (PE) firms that are investing in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Other actors that may also find the Guide useful are limited partners (LPs), asset managers, foundations, family offices and development finance institutions (DFI) that are providing capital to SMEs in emerging markets (Please see Figure 1: Who is this Guide for?). While the investor examples and data presented in the Guide originate from Investing in Women partners and countries of focus, the lessons learned apply broadly to investors operating in emerging markets.

There is no singular or linear path to investing with a gender lens, and there is no single ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to meet the needs and theses of all investors. With that in mind, the Guide outlines various options for investing with a gender lens. We know that gender lens investing is not an “all-or-nothing” scenario. There are multiple ways to integrate progressive practices, including ways that are not resource-intensive. This Guide outlines entry points for investors at any point in their gender lens investing journey and provides various options for decisive actions that can be taken at any stage of the investment process.

There is no single prescribed starting point. Investors can customize their approach to getting started and/or to deepen their involvement. The Guide builds on – and contributes to – a rapidly growing body of knowledge shared within the fields of gender lens investing and development, and is intended to spur action and learning. Recognizing that new resources are continually emerging, this Guide delves into the “how” of gender lens investing and is designed to complement the work of our partners and colleagues cited throughout this paper."

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"This paper provides an analysis of local development, to deepen understanding of characteristics and behavior of women in rural areas in the municipality of Los Cabos, Baja California Sur. Specifically in the local delegations of Santiago, Miraflores, and La Ribera. We also identify investment opportunities that promote the entrepreneurial activity of women in that area. We wish to determine the business opportunities available in the area. We also identify market demands, available and potential resources, and analyze the possible impact of local areas through potential economic activities. The methodology involved examining documentary sources. In addition, we utilize direct observation, and planning workshops. Later, we administer a questionnaire to a representative sample of women from the study area. The results allow us to diagnose the woman’s situation and her development opportunities."

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"Conventional wisdom holds that women are less likely than men to start and lead  businesses. This trend, however, may be changing. Since 2020, the Visa Economic Empowerment Institute (VEEI) has surveyed small businesses around the world. Our findings suggest that firms born in the past two years are more likely than older firms to be headed by women. They are also more likely than pre-pandemic firms to be led by minority women. And once they start to export, they sell to a larger and more diverse set of markets. These women-led firms are also adopting digital technologies at about the same rate as those led by men. What factors predict success? The newly established women-led firms that weathered the initial impacts of COVID-19 better than other businesses share three characteristics: 1) they are more likely to use digital payments; 2) they are more likely to sell on global marketplaces that enable them to scale their sales and diversify their markets; and 3) they are more likely to export. This paper sets out recommendations for policymakers and the business community to better encourage and support the development of women-led firms by: 1) providing access to digital opportunities; 2) fostering digital skills; and 3) promoting a safe environment in which women-led firms can operate."

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"Entrepreneurs need to be prepared to measure and communicate their contribution to climate change mitigation, adaptation, and resilience to key stakeholders. However, there is currently no standardization of climate impact reporting in the small business sector, leaving the burden on entrepreneurs to grow a successful business and implement the right tools to measure climate impact. Climate Collective Foundation and the Aspen Network for Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) have published this guide to provide SGBs, impact investors, and ESOs with a consolidated list of available tools and frameworks for climate impact measurement, along with guidance on how to select best-fit resources based on their industry and impact area."

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"The evidence is indisputable: high-growth scaling ventures are game changers. Scale-ups are the ventures that:

Create the vast majority of new jobs in an economy;
Generate the most value in the form of financial, economic and social returns;
Drive innovation and shape ecosystems;
Incubate and develop talent pipelines; and
Spawn the next generation of thriving scale-ups and the experienced entrepreneurs that create them.

Africa needs more startups that transition to scale. Many more.

But scaling is rare. And difficult. All the more so in sub-Saharan Africa, where large populations do not equate to large addressable markets, necessitating very early (and risky) expansion into new markets in search of the critical mass of customers needed to raise funding and scale a business.

Whilst there are some universal scaling principles that can and should be applied, there isn’t a formula for scaling. Because it isn’t pure science. On the contrary, scaling is predominantly an art: a unique blend of inputs, decisions and actions that is different for each scaling business."

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"This knowledge brief captures key takeaways from six learning lab meetings about practical ways to measure decent work and job quality in the small and growing business (SGB) sector, facilitated by The Good Economy.

The learning lab emphasized the importance of practical measurement solutions and conceptual clarity when measuring decent work. This report seeks to provide an overview of the content discussed, useful resources, and global best practices shared during each of the learning lab meetings."

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"After more than two years of living with the acute challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the small and growing business (SGB) sector is now facing a longer-term reality that affects not only business operations but also how these businesses measure and communicate their impact. The SGB sector is at a critical junction in the pandemic where organizations need to reflect on how hastily crafted impact measurement and management (IMM) solutions may or may not fit into their longer-term IMM strategy.

For these reasons, the purpose of this brief is to:

Highlight the unique IMM challenges faced by Sub-Saharan African SGBs due to COVID-19;
Guide entrepreneurial ecosystem builders in adapting their IMM systems within the context of the new COVID-19 reality; and
Provide tailored resources to enable entrepreneurial ecosystem builders to further adapt their IMM systems to best support entrepreneurs in the «new abnormal.»"

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"The report "Impact Investments in Brazil – 2020", carried out by ANDE in partnership with the Aliança por Investimentos e Negócios de Impacto, Instituto Clima e Sociedade, Fundação Grupo Boticário and with the support of Wright Capital, captures the characteristics of the sector of impact investing in Brazil in the year 2020, based on a sample of 38 impact investors active in the region. The report provides an overview of where and how capital is being allocated and identifies the challenges facing the ecosystem, as well as addressing topics such as gender equity and assessing climate risks and opportunities for portfolios."

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"Swisscontact and Startup Heatmap Europe have joined forces to develop a self-serving toolkit that empowers startup hubs all around the world to measure the health of their ecosystems. The toolkit supports managers of startup programs, university incubators, research transfer organizations, ecosystem builders and policy makers to track the progress of their ecosystem build-up. End-users are empowered to use the toolkit to source data in their home ecosystems, enter them in an interactive dashboard and based on the outcomes, and identify recommended fields of action."

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