Part of the family of social impact funds launched in 2005, the Essential Capital Consortium (ECC) will provide debt financing to social enterprises in the energy, health and Base of the Pyramid financial services sectors.
The ECC, which will finance 25 social enterprises including microfinance institutions (MFIs), has made its first round of loans to three organizations:
– Sproxil, a developer of a patented text message-based drug authentication system;
– Tiaxa, a provider of “nanocredits” to poor consumers in developing countries via mobile phones using big data analytics; and
– Arvand, a Tajikistan-based MFI providing innovative “green loans” to finance solar panels, clean cookstoves and other energy efficient products.
Investors include Church Pension Fund, MetLife, Inc., Agence Française de Développement (the French Development Agency), Deutsche Bank, Calvert Foundation, Prudential Financial, Inc., the Multilateral Investment Fund, member of the Inter-American Development Bank Group, Left Hand Foundation, IBM International Foundation, Tikehau Capital, Salvepar, Cisco Foundation and the Posner-Wallace Foundation.
The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) is also providing credit enhancement support.