Promoting a new generation of African entrepreneurs is at the heart of I&P's mandate. We have developed a rigorous methodology to measure and monitor the impacts of our partner companies. We are also committed to promote African entrepreneurship and we regularly develop advocacy projects to amplify our impact.

Our impact objectives

I&P supports initiatives with a strong social impact on the real economy, mainly in poor and fragile countries on the African continent, and partners with responsible companies that promote inclusive growth and have a strong potential for impact on their local stakeholders: employees, customers, suppliers and distributors, the State…

 

Promoting the emergence of a new generation of African entrepreneurs is at the heart of I&P's impact mandate. Our impact strategy is based on six key pillars: African entrepreneurship, decent jobs, SDG-aligned goods and services, women's empowerment, local economic fabric and the environment.

 

#1 • Developing African entrepreneurship

#2 • Creating decent jobs

#3 • Providing SDG-aligned goods and services

#4 • Promoting women's empowerment

#5 • Strenghtening the local economic fabric

#6 • Fostering environmentally-friendly development


Impact Pillar #1

DEVELOPING AFRICAN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

80% of portfolio companies managed by African entrepreneurs
 

Promoting a new generation of African entrepreneurs is at the heart of I&P's mandate. 80% of portfolio companies are managed by African entrepreneurs.

I&P mainly focuses on French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa (West Africa, Indian Ocean, Central Africa) where financing solutions for small and medium-sized enterprises are much less developed than in English-speaking Africa.  

 

Focus on Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 8: Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all

8.3 Promote development-oriented policies that support productive activities, decent job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and encourage the formalization and growth of micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, including through access to financial services

8.5 By 2030, achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men, including for young people and persons with disabilities, and equal pay for work of equal value

Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries

10.1 By 2030, progressively achieve and sustain income growth of the bottom 40 per cent of the population at a rate higher than the national average

10.2 By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion or economic or other status

Goal 17: Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development

17.5 Adopt and implement investment promotion regimes for least developed countries


Impact Pillar #2

CREATING DECENT JOBS

10 000 jobs created or maintained • 95% of employees receive health insurance
 

The context

Formal small and medium-sized enterprises are pillars of job creation, but are too few on the African continent. The stakes are high: 450 million Africans will enter the labour market by 2050. Each year only 3 million formal jobs are created despite the arrival of 10 to 12 million young people on the labour market.

A large majority (almost 90%) of employment in Africa is provided by an informal sector that is low in productivity and insufficiently structured to absorb new entrants on the labor market.

 

Our strategy

I&P supports SMEs that have a strong job creation potential, while simultaneously helping to improve the quality of these jobs.

Formal jobs maintained through productivity investments or formal jobs created result in higher-paying and more secure jobs, providing access to training, social security, social protections and a « regular salary ». The average minimum wage paid by I&P’s partner companies is 53% higher than the average minimum legal wage in their respective countries

 

Going deeper

In October 2019, I&P published a report on the challenges and impacts of SME formalization in Sub-Saharan Africa. This report is based on two field studies in which several employees of our partner companies in Madagascar and Senegal were interviewed.

Discover the report

 

Focus on Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere

1.3 Implement nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures for all, including floors, and by 2030 achieve substantial coverage of the poor and the vulnerable

Goal 8: Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all

8.5 By 2030, achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men, including for young people and persons with disabilities, and equal pay for work of equal value

Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

3.8 Achieve universal health coverage, including financial risk protection, access to quality essential health-care services and access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines and vaccines for all.


Impact Pillar #3

PROVIDING SDG-ALIGNED GOODS AND SERVICES

75% of portfolio companies provide a product or service that directly contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
 

Addressing the main development challenges in Sub-Saharan Africa is at the heart of I&P’s mission. The vast majority of our investees improve local access to essential goods or services, in close alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Focus on Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 2: Zero Hunger

Example: Agroserv Industrie (Sinergi Burkina) is a maize processing company that produces grits and flour. The company bought 15,000 tons of maize from small producers in 2019. Read more

Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

Example: Procréa  (IPAE 2) offers quality healthcare for women and children. The company held 5,346 gynecological consultations in 2019. Read more

Goal 4: Quality Education

In 2020, 8,788 students were enrolled in schools or training programs in 2019 thanks to 7 investees in I&P’s portfolios, AMI (IPAE 2), ENKO (IPAE 1) and CAIF, Etudesk, IMHG, IST and Vatel (IPDEV 2).

Goal 6: Ensure access to water and sanitation for all

Example: Delta Irrigation (IPAE 1) saves water thanks to efficient irrigation systems. 1,000 hectares of land have been irrigated thanks to Delta’s solutions. Read more

Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy

Example: PEG Africa (IPAE 1) supplies off-grid solar panels in West African rural and semi-urban areas. PEG installed 23,044 new solar kits for underserved rural household in 2019. Read more


Impact Pillar #4

PROMOTING WOMEN'S EMPOWERMENT

31% of women-owned or led companies •  47% of women employees among I&P's partner companies
 

I&P’s overall objective is to promote gender equality within formal SMEs in Sub-Saharan Africa. We seek to proactively develop a pipeline of SMEs that address the specific needs of women, focus on women’s inclusion, empower women in decision-making processes, and provide them access to decent jobs and training opportunities.

 

I&P formally announced its gender strategy in the document “Opportunities to bridge the gender gap in African SMEs”, published in 2018. Anchored in I&P’s mission, the gender strategy seeks to promote gender equality among its portfolio companies in Africa, as well as to lead by example, demonstrating a gender-diverse governance and promoting mixed teams and women’s equal access to senior leadership and investment positions.

Read more about I&P's gender strategy

 

Focus on Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

5.1 End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere

5.5 Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decisionmaking in political, economic and public life


Impact Pillar #5

STRENGHTENING THE LOCAL ECONOMIC FABRIC

71% of suppliers to our portfolio companies are local • 2 000+ suppliers are working with our portfolio companies
 

The companies supported by I&P contribute to strengthening important local networks, thereby generating new opportunities for small suppliers and distributors in the countries where they operate.

SMEs build local networks of subcontractors. The ripple effects are particularly strong in the agricultural sector, where 8,734 smallholder farmers contracted with agribusiness companies in 2019.

 

Focus on Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 17: Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development

17.1 Strengthen domestic resource mobilization, including through international support to developing countries, to improve domestic capacity for tax and other revenue collection


Impact Pillar #6

FOSTERING ENVIRONMENTALLY-FRIENDLY DEVELOPMENT

42% of IPAE companies have implemented green projects
 

I&P is promoting sustainable growth through investment in resource-efficient companies with limited carbon footprints. We believe that our partner companies can play an active role in experiencing and sharing replicable, efficient and renewable energy solutions.

I&P seeks to partner with companies that provide services that improve environmental impact (green technology, energy efficiency, waste management…) and that promote sustainable use of natural resources (fishing, forestry and agriculture).

We help companies mitigate potential negative impacts by implementing sound environmental management systems.

I&P calculates the carbon footprint of IPAE’s portfolio annually to identify the main sources of emissions. In 2019, its footprint amounted to 14,796 tCO2eq.

 

Focus on Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

12.6 Encourage companies, especially large and transnational companies, to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle

Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

13.1 Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries

13.B Promote mechanisms for raising capacity for effective climate change-related planning and management in least developed countries and small island developing States, including focusing on women, youth and local and marginalized communities

Measuring and monitoring impact

I&P has implemented a rigorous methodology to measure and monitor the impacts of its partner companies.

Building an impact
oriented portfolio
 
Before the investment, I&P evaluates the potential impacts of a project, as well as its ESG risks and opportunities (Environment, Social, Governance)
 
 
 
 

Implementing ESG
action plans
 
I&P sets up with the entrepreneur a tailor-made ESG action plan, reviewed annually, for each company of the portfolio.
 
I&P also implements ESG measures across the portfolio, such as social security or energy efficiency measures.

Measuring and
evaluating results
 
Once a year, I&P reviews the impact and ESG performance of portfolio companies, thanks to an in-house information management tool (40 indicators), based on IRIS metrics.
I&P also conducts in-depth impact studies every year on one or several companies.

Reporting
our impacts
 
I&P publishes an annual ESG & Impact report for each fund under management, as well as a global impact report.
 
I&P also conducts a proactive advocacy policy to maximize its impact.
 
 

I&P publishes since 2020 an annual impact report, that presents an aggregate picture of the collective results of our mission across the entire organization and team.

The report presents an overview of I&P's activities and impact methodology and goes through our six impact pillars.

 

In addition, I&P releases annually the ESG & Impact reports of its funds under management.

 

Our advocacy mission

I&P has adopted a proactive advocacy policy to promote the recognition of SMEs as vectors of change and the implementation of appropriate financing solutions in Africa.

 

Our objectives

Stimulating entrepreneurial spirit in Africa and promote a new generation of men and women entrepreneurs on the continent

Fostering the growth of private equity in Africa, a relevant financing solution for SMEs

Mobilizing financial resources and contributing to the development of impact investing in Africa and the world

Publications

I&P regularly publishes studies and reports addressing concrete issues related to its expertise: impact investing, SME mentoring, private equity....

Publication

Formalizing SMEs in Sub-Saharan Africa
Publication date:
October 2019
Author:
I&P
Language:
Français, Anglais
I&P publishes a summary report, based on its experience, on the challenges and impacts of SME formalization in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Supporting Education in Africa: Challenges and Opportunities for the Impact Investor
Publication date:
September 2019
Author:
I&P, FERDI
Language:
French, English
The feasibility study was conducted by the Foundation for Studies and Research on International Development (FERDI) between September 2018 and May 2019. Its main observations opened the discussions to elaborate the impact program I&P Education to Employment.
Fifteen years, fifteen lessons from Africa
Author:
I&P
Language:
French, English
An original document that reviews the main lessons learned from 15 years of investing in start-ups and small and medium-sized enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa.
IPDEV, a pioneering initiative to promote African SMEs
Author:
I&P
Language:
English
A short document reviewing the successes, challenges and main lessons learned from I&P's first impact fund: Investisseur & Partenaire pour le Développement (IPDEV).
Investing in Africa's Development
Author:
I&P, FERDI
Language:
French, English
A study demonstrating how impact investment is an effective and innovative response to the continent's development challenges, based on an in-depth sector-by-sector analysis.
Toolkit "Investing in Africa's SGBs"
Author:
I&P, INSEAD, ANDE
Language:
French, English
A practical guide designed to foster the development of private equity in Africa and encourage the creation of investment teams on the continent

ARTICLES & BLOG

The team of I&P regularly shares its experience and best practices in the areas of impact investing and African entrepreneurship with specialized media and blogs.

There is no such thing as impact, but only proof of impact
Author:
J.-M. Severino, E.Debled, E. Nocquet, C. Bourrin
Language:
French, English
Three things we have learned about investing in African small businesses and in fragile countries
Author:
J.-M. Severino
Language:
English
Source:
OECD
Acting sustainably to promote African small business
Author:
J.-M. Severino
Language:
French, English
Source:
Revue Secteur Privé & Développement
Boosting CSR in African SMEs
Author:
Elodie Nocquet
Language:
French, English
Source:
Revue Secteur Privé & Développement
Development Partners, One More Push for Greater Impact!
Author:
J.-M. Severino, P. Baraton
Language:
English
Source:
FERDI
Africa’s Big Boom
Author:
J.-M. Severino, E. Debled
Language:
French, English
Source:
Project Syndicate

Zoom: our blog Entreprenante Afrique

I&P launched with the Foundation for Studies and Research on International Development (FERDI).the blog "Enterprenante Afrique", to promote entrepreneurial dynamism in sub-Saharan Africa and better understand the context in which African entrepreneurs are working.

The blog gathers research articles, experience sharing and field testimonies on African businesses.

 

BOOKS

Ouvrages

Entreprenante Afrique
Author:
J.-M. Severino, J. Hajdenberg
Language:
French
Editor:
Odile Jacob
Africa's Moment
Author:
J.-M. Severino, O. Ray
Language:
French, English
Editor:
Odile Jacob
English