I&P’s gender strategy: one year later, where do we stand?Submitted by Admin on Thu, 03/07/2019 - 18:35
A year ago, on International Women's Rights Day, I&P published the key elements of its gender policy, "Opportunities to bridge the gender gap in Africa".
Where do we stand today on these issues? What actions have been taken over the year? We propose a rapid overview on I&P’s main objectives and achievements to promote women's entrepreneurship and greater gender equity in Africa.
Our objective: to develop women's leadership and access to corporate governance
• Among the companies financed by I&P, 20% are run by women
• For its IPAE 2 fund, I&P has established a non-financial compensation mechanism for the team with a gender-specific objective: to have at least 30% of companies owned or managed by women
• Women represent 20% of board members of the portfolio companies (compared to 14% on average in Africa, according to the Women Matter Africa report)
• The acceleration programme set up in partnership with USAID in Burkina Faso, Niger and Senegal has made it possible to finance a majority of companies run by women.
Focus on PACE USAID: A Partnership to Accelerate Entrepreneurship in the Sahel
I&P and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) launched an innovative acceleration program in late 2016 for young companies in Niger, Burkina Faso and Senegal. To date, 64% of the selected companies are run by women (10 out of a total of 18 companies supported by the programme). By targeting very small businesses, the program allows these women entrepreneurs to access higher value-added activities in the formal sector. Click here to learn more about the program
• I&P regularly promotes female entrepreneurship through its advocacy activities and has notably produced a series of portraits and interviews of women entrepreneurs in 2018:
→ Sylvie Sagbo, director of the Senegalese company SENAR les Délices de Lysa
→ Fidèle Diomandé, founder and director of the publishing house VALLESSE in Côte d'Ivoire
→ Anne Meriemme, who heads the AFRIBON group with Julien Giuge
→ Myriam Kadio-Moroko Brou, founder and director of the clinic PROCRÉA
Our objective: to increase women's access to decent jobs and training opportunities
• Nearly 40% of I&P’s portfolio is made up of female employees, especially in the microfinance, manufacturing and service sectors.
• While the industrial sector mostly offers low-skilled jobs with lower wages, it is a stable source of income for people with a low level of education. In the service or microfinance sectors, wages are higher due to the higher proportion of skilled jobs, such as IT. Women are thus increasingly qualified: they represent 52% of highly qualified employees in Senegal (Teranga Capital), and 42% in Côte d'Ivoire (Comoé Capital).
Our objective: to address the specific needs of women with increased access to basic goods and services
• Several SMEs are participating in SDG 5 "Achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls". To cite some emblematic examples
- Within the Enko Education school network, 50% of students are girls
- Among the microfinance institutions in the portfolio, 46% of loans are contracted by women for their entrepreneurial activities.
- The Senegalese clinic NEST, which specializes in maternal and child health, conducted 6,400 gynaecological consultations and 4,800 paediatric consultations in 2018. About 33% of the patients are from the middle and working classes.
LOCAL ECONOMIC ECOSYSTEMS
Our objective: to increase the activity of local female suppliers and distributors
• The SME partners of IPAE 1 have worked with more than 1200 suppliers, 67% of which are local suppliers. In the agribusiness sector in particular, a quarter of small producers are women.
WHAT ABOUT I&P ?
Our objective: to demonstrate I&P's commitment to gender equality both at employee and governance levels
• The I&P team counts 47% of women. Today, 35% of the investment team is made up of women.
• I&P is also committed to improving the representation of women in its governance bodies, which now represent 25% of its members.
The information summarized below concerns the entire I&P portfolio: companies directly financed through our I&P Development 1 and I&P Africa Entrepreneurs 1 and 2 funds (IPAE 1 and IPAE 2) and companies financed by African funds sponsored by I&P Development 2 (Comoé Capital in Côte d'Ivoire, Miarakap in Madagascar, Sinergi Burkina, Sinergi Niger, and Teranga Capital).
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