Our Staff Writers and Editors offer insights on the latest news, events, interviews and other happenings from the development through enterprise and base of the pyramid universes
Friday, September 25, 2015 — Europe & Eurasia

Report: Equity Crowdfunding Platforms ‘Crowding Out’ Banks, VCs & Angel Investors in the U.K.

Source: Crowdfund Insider

Equity crowdfunding platforms are “crowding out” banks, venture capitalists and business angels in the UK, suggests a new paper published by researchers from the University of St Andrews and the University of Stirling. St. Andrews explains that UK startups are “embracing the £146 million Crowdcube economy.” Crowdcube may be the largest investment platform but other sites like Seedrs and SyndicateRoom are playing a significant role in this financial transition. The paper builds upon existing research in the space including, Mollick’s, Cambridge University and more.
Wednesday, September 9, 2015 — South Asia

A VC for VCs: New Seattle accelerator hopes to launch investing firms in emerging markets

Source: GeekWire

The same team that launched the do-good venture capital firm Unitus Seed Fund in 2012 is at it again, announcing a new accelerator program that plans to help launch venture capitalists in developing parts of the world.
Thursday, August 27, 2015 — No Region Specified

Impact Investing Turns Out to Be a Sustainable Business

Source: The Economic Times

Fence-sitters, naysayers, and doubting Thomases amongst investors who always sought proof that impact investing - investments made with the intent of generating environmental and social benefit alongside a financial return - is worthwhile and profi table can now write out their cheques without losing sleep.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015 — No Region Specified

5 Smart, Sustainable Innovations Ready to Take Over the Developing World

Source: Take Part

The social enterprises will receive mentoring from venture capitalists and entrepreneurs on how to scale their ideas.
Monday, August 17, 2015 — No Region Specified

Venture Capital Investing Boom Neglects Startups Tackling Poverty

Source: San Jose Mercury News

The venture capital investing boom has sent billions of dollars to startups that serve the upper crust of society, yet many VCs continue to resist investing in viable businesses bringing toilets, water and electricity to the rural poor.
Saturday, August 1, 2015 — South Asia

Viewpoint: E-wallets Won’t Work in India, Says Mswipe Founder

Source: e27

A digital/mobile wallet defeats the very purpose of money, and hence, it is not going to work in India, states Manish Patel, Founder and CEO of mobile point of sale (mPoS) company Mswipe.
Friday, July 24, 2015 — No Region Specified

FinTech Investments Quadruple: Top Trends to Watch

Source: Forbes

Investments into FinTech startups recently quadrupled, growing from just over $3 billion in 2013 to over $12 billion in 2014. And consider alongside that another trend showing that crowdfunding will surpass VC in 2016 as a funding source–given that crowdfunding itself is a segment of the FinTech market.
Friday, July 17, 2015 — South Asia

Top Innovation Ecosystem Leaders Across India Converge at India Innovation Forum 2015

Source: The Financial Express

The inaugaral edition of India Innovation Forum (IIF 2015) in Bengaluru saw top Innovators, Entrepreneurs, VCs, Impact Investors, CEOs and Thought leaders come together on 11th and 12th of July, 2015 to interact, share ideas and raise important questions on Innovation ecosystem in India. They interacted with a diverse group 150+ select senior executives from top Indian and multinational companies.
Wednesday, July 15, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Hong Kong VC Firm Nest Expands to Nairobi to Support Continent’s Talents

Source: Ventureburn

Hong Kong VC and incubation firm Nest has recently announced its expansion into Africa, connecting local talent with Asian investors abroad.
Friday, June 26, 2015 — No Region Specified

Technology Billionaire Bill Gates to Double Investment in Clean Energy Projects Over Five Years

Source: International Business Times

Technology billionaire Bill Gates says he’ll plow $2 billion of his own money into breakthrough energy projects that reduce emissions and eschew fossil fuels. The planned investment doubles what Gates already has spent on early-stage energy companies geared to fight climate change, the Financial Times reported Thursday.
Thursday, June 25, 2015 — No Region Specified

Early Tesla Motors Investors Raise $400 Million Impact VC Fund

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Two early investors in Tesla Motors Inc.TSLA +0.96% teamed up and raised a $400 million venture capital fund to back startups that have a positive social or environmental impact, Venture Capital Dispatch has learned.
Thursday, June 25, 2015 — No Region Specified

PRESS RELEASE: Report: Private Impact Investing Funds Yielded Financial Performance in Line With Non-Impact Funds

Source: Digital Journal

Private impact investment funds -- specifically private equity and venture capital funds -- that pursue social impact objectives have recorded financial returns in line with a comparative universe of funds that only pursue financial returns.
Wednesday, June 24, 2015 — South Asia

MyDentist Raises Around $8M From LGT Group, Existing Investors

Source: VCCircle

Mumbai-based Total Dental Care Pvt Ltd, which runs dental care chain under the MyDentist brand, has secured Rs 50 crore (around $8 million) in its Series C round of funding led by LGT Venture Philanthropy, a global impact investing organization founded by LGT and the Princely Family of Liechtenstein.
Thursday, June 18, 2015 — South Asia

Aavishkaar Raises Rs 500 crore for Foreign Investments

Source: The Economic Times

Aavishkaar, India's biggest social entrepreneurship focused venture capital fund, would be investing about Rs 500 crore ($75 million) in start-ups from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Indonesia.
Wednesday, June 17, 2015 — South Asia

Aavishkaar raises $75 million for foreign investments

Source: Economic Times

Aavishkaar, India's biggest social entrepreneurship focused venture capital fund, will be investing about Rs 500 crore ($75 million) in start-ups from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Indonesia.
Monday, June 1, 2015 — South Asia

Profit From a Cause

Source: Business Today

Making and selling portable toilets? Investors wrinkled their noses when Rajeev Kher, Managing Director of Pune-based Saraplast Pvt Ltd, first sought funds from them in 1999. Sixteen years later, the toilets have been such a success that he is spoilt for choice as he looks for a third round of funding. "My company has been profitable for a long time," he says. "But I will never forget that when I started off, it was Aavishkar which came forward to support me."
Tuesday, May 12, 2015 — No Region Specified

Viewpoint: Are There Really Too Many Venture Capitalists in Impact Investment?

Source: Pioneers Post

For years I have heard those involved in impact investment moan about the extent to which experienced venture capitalists (VCs) are “taking over”: bringing values which will destroy the very essence of the movement.
Monday, April 27, 2015 — No Region Specified

'Do-good' Companies Can Do Well for Investors, Wharton Researchers Say

Source: Chicago Tribune

Impact investing is a nice idea — and for many critics that’s precisely the problem.
Monday, April 27, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

DfID Accused of Heightening Inequality Through Support for Private Sector

Source: The Guardian

Report by campaign group Global Justice Now points finger at Department for International Development over private health and education projects.
Monday, April 27, 2015 — No Region Specified

Once Idealistic, Crowdfunding Is Now an Unholy Hybrid of Retail, Investment, and Risk

Source: Quartz

Dave Bogaty is a coffee junkie. He exclusively buys his beans from a small-batch roaster in Brooklyn and scouts out local varieties in every new city he visits.
Friday, April 17, 2015 — South Asia

Indian Microfinance Company Equitas Finance Plans IPO, Looks to Raise Up to Rs 1,500 Crore

Source: The Economic Times

Chennai-based microfinance company Equitas Finance is said to be planning an initial public offering (IPO) that could mean substantial returns for exiting private equity and venture capital funds. The company that's 98% owned by a dozen private equity and venture capital funds is looking at raising around Rs 1,200-1,500 crore by selling a stake of up to 25%, said three people involved with the plan.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015 — No Region Specified

Shhh! Don't Tell Institutional Investors, but Sustainability Drives Returns in Real Assets

Source: The Huffington Post - Dave Chen and his team at Equilibrium Capital in Portland, Ore., don't generally pitch pension funds and other institutional investors on the firm's thesis that environmentally and socially beneficial practices can drive operational efficiencies, reduced risk and above-market, or 'alpha,' returns.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

$1.4 Billion Fund Targets Eco-Social Development in Sub-Saharan Africa

Source: Africa Outlook

The Fundo Soberano de Angola (FSDEA) has announced the launch of five dedicated investment funds that will target high growth industries while promoting economic and social development in Angola and the Sub-Saharan region.
Thursday, April 2, 2015 — South Asia

Alibaba Rival Launches Crowdfunding Site for Startups in China

Source: TechCrunch

China’s largest e-commerce companies are eager to leverage their millions of users and hoards of data for new projects. For example, Alibaba’s other businesses include healthcare management, financial services, and cloud data. Now, its smaller but still formidable rival, is branching out into crowdfunding for startups.
Thursday, March 26, 2015 — No Region Specified

Survey: 57% of Institutional Investors Believe ESG Has Positive Impact on Returns

Source: Pensions & Investments

Some 57% of asset owners and other institutional investors surveyed believe incorporating ESG into alternative investments decision-making has a positive impact on risk-adjusted returns, said a report Monday from Mercer and LGT Capital Partners.
Wednesday, March 25, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

The Future Of Africa’s Private Equity Space Is Increasingly Female

Source: AFKInsider

Private equity is historically a male-dominated field, and historically, Africa’s local industry has been no different.
Friday, March 20, 2015 — South Asia

Press Release: Ennovent’s Impact Investment Holding invests in Anant Learning

Source: Ennovent

Members of the Ennovent Circle, the Ennovent Impact Investment Holding and Upaya Social Ventures, closed a seed investment round in Delhi-based Anant Learning & Development.
Tuesday, March 10, 2015 — No Region Specified

Village Capital Announces Latest Impact Investments

Source: Forbes

Village Capital, a leading venture firm investing in social enterprises, recently announced its latest investments. Operating with a unique model that starts with a cohort of startups in a particular industry, most recently healthcare IT, that actually relies on the startups to choose the companies Village Capital invests in.
Thursday, February 19, 2015 — Europe & Eurasia

The Secrets to Closing a $100m Venture Capital Funding Deal

Source: Real Business

London-based online money transfer business WorldRemit has closed a funding round worth $100m, backed by Technology Crossover Ventures and prior investor Accel Partners.
Monday, February 16, 2015 — No Region Specified

Will These 5 Models of Crowdfunding Replace Angel and VC Investors?

Source: Entrepreneur

Even if you ignore all the hype around crowdfunding, there can be no doubt that it is a real alternative for entrepreneurs to achieve visibility and funding today. According to articles on Entrepreneur last year, there are now almost 1,000 crowdfunding platforms in existence, currently estimated to add more than $65 billion and 270,000 jobs to the economy.
Friday, January 30, 2015 — No Region Specified

A $710 Million Crowdfinanced Company: An Alternative to Venture Capital

Source: Crowdfund Insider

Last week the UC Berkeley case study on Sanovas Inc., the San Rafael California Life Science accelerator was presented at the JP Morgan Chase OneMed conference to a packed audience of over 120 investors. I presented the case study, which is the first in a series to be released by UC Berkeley looking at innovative firms and models in crowdfunding.
Wednesday, January 21, 2015 — No Region Specified

Coinbase’s $75M Raise Shows Investors Still See Gold in Bitcoin

Source: VentureBeat

Coinbase announced a raise today of $75 million, putting the company’s total fundraising just over $106 million. That’s the biggest raise that a Bitcoin company has ever seen, despite the fact that Bitcoin’s value continues to decline. Last week, the coin fell below $200. As of this writing, however, it’s worth roughly $210 per Bitcoin.
Tuesday, January 13, 2015 — No Region Specified

Impact investor Gray Ghost Ventures to Raise $60 mln Third Fund

Source: PE Hub

Impact investor Gray Ghost Ventures said it is raising a $60 million third fund that represents a big step up from its $35 million second fund in 2009. The firm expects a first close on about $25 million in March, said CEO Arun Gore.
Tuesday, January 13, 2015 — South Asia

Venture Capital Investors Plan $2 Billion New Funds for Indian Startups

Source: The Economic Times

Venture capital investors are on the road to raise nearly $2 billion, or about Rs12,400 crore, in new funds this year to power the next generation of emerging businesses in India's booming startup sector.
Monday, January 12, 2015 — South Asia

Ujjivan Financial Services Clinches Single Largest Funding Deal in India's Microfinance Sector

Source: The Times of India

UK's Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC), private equity investors CX Partners, Newquest and a unit of Bajaj Group are leading a Rs 600-crore investment in Ujjivan Financial Services, clinching the single largest funding deal in India's microfinance sector, sources directly familiar with the matter said.
Friday, January 2, 2015 — South Asia

Aavishkar Venture Capital to Raise $400 Million in 2015

Source: The Economic Times

Aavishkar, the country's biggest social entrepreneurship-focused venture capital fund, is set to raise $400 million (Rs 2,500 crore) in 2015. This would be the biggest amount raised by any fund focusing on the social sector or impact investing in the country.
Thursday, November 13, 2014 — No Region Specified

SunFunder Completes New Round Of Funding

Source: CleanTechnica

SunFunder, the US crowdfunding company dedicated to funding off-grid solar projects in developing countries, announced Wednesday that it had completed its Series A equity round of funding, raising $2.5 million. The announcement came following investments from Schneider Electric, Better Ventures, and a private family foundation based in Palo Alto. This latest announcement follows on from an original Series A investment made by Khosla Impact and a group of existing angel investors.
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 — No Region Specified

Venture Capital Firm Invests in Start-Ups With a Social Mission

Source: The New York Times

When the co-founders of SolarCity, Lyndon and Peter Rive, along with their cousin Elon Musk, were raising money for their solar energy start-up in 2007, they called on just one outside investor.
Monday, June 9, 2014 — No Region Specified

Changing the world, one social venture at a time

Source: Press Release

Winners of the inaugural DBS-NUS Social Venture Challenge Asia take home prizes, trophies and 8 months’ worth of business experience
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 — South Asia

Lok Capital Sells its Stake and Leaves RuralShores Business Services

Source: The Economic Times

mpact investment firm Lok Capital has exited its portfolio company RuralShores Business Services by selling its stake in the rural business process outsourcing (BPO) company to an unnamed strategic investor.
Monday, March 31, 2014 — No Region Specified

mHealth startup Telemed secures venture capital from The African Group

Source: ventureburn

Telemed Medical Services is an Ethiopian startup responsible for the country’s popular mobile health and medical consultancy service, Hello Doctor, and has recently announced it’s raised funds from US-based VC group The Africa Group (TAG). The Ethiopian engineering consultancy that, among other things, specialises in mobile health consulting is giving up a 25% stake of Telemed and plans to further address a crucial demand for health-related service delivery.
Tuesday, February 25, 2014 — No Region Specified

d.light Announces $11 Million Series C Financing, Expands Board of Directors

Source: Power Engineering

The Series C round included participation from all major investors, including DFJ, Omidyar Network, Nexus India Capital, Gray Ghost Ventures, Acumen Fund and Garage Technology Ventures. With the closing of Series C, d.light has raised a total of $40 million in capital.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014 — No Region Specified

Gates Foundation Hires Second Biotech VC to Connect With Startups

Source: Xconomy

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is trying to get more biotech entrepreneurs to work on global health, and it just hired another venture capitalist to give the initiative a boost.
Wednesday, January 22, 2014 — No Region Specified

Healthcare tech is hot for venture capitalists

Source: The Hindu Business Line

From wearables like wristbands that keep track of your physical activity to wireless weighing machines that help you track your weight fluctuations, technology is getting into healthcare with an eye firmly on the consumer.
Tuesday, September 17, 2013 — No Region Specified

BDC Venture Capital allocates $135 million more to healthcare innovation, broadens investment strategy

Source: Yahoo!

As part of its mandate to support Canadian entrepreneurs, BDC Venture Capital announced today it has allocated $135 million in new capital to direct venture investments in innovative healthcare companies. That brings its total direct commitment to the sector to $270 million. Recognizing a massive and growing market opportunity, the BDC Venture Capital Healthcare Fund will broaden its investment strategy and invest in technology, products and services that aim to dramatically improve global healthcare productivity, efficiency and patient outcomes.
Thursday, August 15, 2013 — South Asia

Vinod Khosla-backed Unitus Seed Fund to invest up to Rs 1 cr in Caravan Craft

Source: The Economic Times

Unitus Seed Fund, backed by marquee investor Vinod Khosla has made its third investment of the year, funding Bangalore-based Caravan Craft Retail, as capital flow increases for social ventures in areas beyond micro-finance.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013 — No Region Specified

Intellecap Impact And Unilazer Invest In Head Held High

Source: Deal Curry

Angels of the Intellecap Impact Investment Network and Unilazer Ventures, amongst others, have invested R2.5 Cr into Bangalore-based startup - Head Held High Services, a rural skills development and employment creation enterprise. The investment will be used to scale up operations and ink important partnerships over the next 12 months.
Monday, August 12, 2013 — South Asia

Aavishkaar makes final close of second venture fund at $94M

Source: VCCircle

The larger fund gives Aavishkaar the ability to write larger cheques and invest across various stages of its portfolio companies.
Friday, August 9, 2013 — Sub-Saharan Africa

VCTF sells impact investing to fund managers

Source: GhanaWeb

Last week, the Venture Capital Trust Fund (VCTF) began the process of attracting impact investors, which it expects to make investments that will both give them profit and make positive social impacts at the same time.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013 — No Region Specified

Accion’s Venture Lab Closes Initial Investments in Financial Inclusion Start-Ups

Source: Press Release

Accion announced the first five investments by Venture Lab, its $10 million seed capital initiative, which invests in start-up companies that help expand global financial inclusion. A pioneer and leader in bringing financial services to the underserved, Accion launched Venture Lab in April, 2012.
Monday, January 7, 2013 — South Asia

NIC to launch Rs 5,000 cr VC fund for innovation: Pitroda

Source: Business Standard

The fund will support enterprises which drive change at the bottom of the economic pyramid
Monday, January 7, 2013 — South Asia

Lok Capital buys minority stake in social enterprise Drishti


Firm will use funds to service underserved geographies of Karnataka
Thursday, January 3, 2013 — South Asia

Unitus Seed Fund lands $8 Million for BoP Startups from Leading Early-stage Investors

Source: Press Release

Investment includes backing of Vinod Khosla, Mohandas Pai, Mike Murray and others
Monday, December 3, 2012 — South Asia

What Is eBay’s Omidyar Doing on Delhi’s MedTech Row?

Source: New York Times

Pierre Omidyar is best known as the founder of the online auction company e-Bay, which he grew from an “odd little Web site” to one of Web commerce’s biggest and longest-lasting success stories.
Monday, December 3, 2012 — South Asia

Patnis purchase stake in Grameen Capital India

Source: Business Standard

Grameen Capital India (GCI) has announced that Amit Patni and Arihant Patni have acquired a stake in the company from original investor IFMR Trust. The Patni's after exiting their software services exports company to iGate in a $1.2 billion deal have started Nirvana Venture Advisors, a venture capital fund with focus on the internet space in India.
Monday, November 12, 2012 — South Asia

eBay founder's investment firm makes a grant to global health consortium

Source: Times of India

Omidyar Network, the philanthropic investment firm of eBay founder, Pierre Omidyar, is making a $1.5 million grant to a global consortium supporting innovation in healthcare and medical technology. The grant has been made to Massachusetts General Hospital's Center for Global Health to support the Consortium for Affordable Medical Technologies (CAMTech).
Wednesday, November 7, 2012 — South Asia

Lok Capital is re-inventing strategy for social impact

Source: Business Standard

Rajiv B Lall, 55, managing director and chief executive officer of Infrastructure Development Finance Company talks unlike his peers in glamorous investment banking and private equity business despite spending over thirty years with institutions such as Warburg Pincus, Morgan Stanley and Asian Development Bank.
Monday, October 15, 2012 — North Africa and Near East

Israel’s Rather Different Social Network

Source: Wall Street Journal

ISTANBUL—One of the more unusual presentations at the Webit conference here was from Israel Venture Network, a 10-year social entrepreneurship network targeting some of Israel’s deprived and excluded citizens, in a talk given by the former tech Chief Executive Isabel Maxwell.
Tuesday, October 9, 2012 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Opportunity Africa: How One Social Venture Is Crowdsourcing the For-Profit Finance Model

Source: Forbes

The best social entrepreneurs are always tweaking the model. In microfinance, crowd-sourced ventures have aimed at connecting first world capital with developing world opportunity – and with some success. A few years ago, I met Mads Kjaer in Oxford and was fascinated by a model that added risk and reward to what had been more a form of philanthropy than investment.
Friday, September 28, 2012 — No Region Specified

USAID and Acumen Partner to Spur Private Debt Capital for Social Enterprises in Developing Countries

Source: Acumen Fund Blog

New York – Today the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and Acumen Fund, a nonprofit global venture fund addressing poverty across Africa and South Asia, announced a collaboration to facilitate the flow of up to $15 million in private debt capital to social enterprises working to provide critical goods and services to the underserved across these regions.
Thursday, September 27, 2012 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Early stage investment growing in Africa tech

Source: PC Advisor

The rise of technology hubs over the last couple of years has spurred investment, helped by humanitarian agencies and VCs
Tuesday, September 18, 2012 — Latin America

Venture Capital Is Taking Off in Mexico

Source: CNBC

Mexico has a large, stable and growing economy, currently the 14th largest economy in the world and, according to Goldman Sachs, will be the fifth largest economy by 2050.
Wednesday, April 11, 2012 — North Africa and Near East

Microfinance Giant Launches Venture Capital Fund For East Africa

Source: Forbes

Accion, an international microfinance and investment firm, has launched Venture Lab, a $10 million investment vehicle which will provide seed capital and management support to financial inclusion startups worldwide, with a particular focus on East Africa and India.
Thursday, April 5, 2012 — South Asia

Cisco Invests in Rural Venture Capital Firm

Source: The Hindu Business Line

Cisco today announced an investment in Aavishkaar, a venture fund founded to promote development in rural and semi-urban India.
Friday, March 23, 2012 — South Asia

Omidyar Network Backs Two More Indian Firms


Omidyar Network started funding projects in India about two years ago with plans to invest up to $200 million in five years
Monday, February 6, 2012 — South Asia

Unitus Seed Fund Launches with Three Social Enterprise Investments in India

Source: Press Release

New Unitus Labs Initiative Seeks to Accelerate Development of Innovative Startups Which Have the Potential to Significantly Benefit Families Living on Less Than $2 Per Day
  • Managing Partners

    William Davidson Institute
  • Sponsoring Partner

    Citi Foundation
  • Content Partners

Subscribe to Our E-Newsletter

For Email Marketing you can trust

Found an Article we're Missing?Found an Article we're Missing?

Submit An Article


Social MediaSocial Media

Facebook Twitter

Story Snapshot