Growth in ‘gender-smart’ investing helps sisters do it for themselves

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

By Sarah Shearman

When former banker Ivy Huq Russell struggled to raise funds for her business – an app designed to empower women in Bangladesh by sharing expert health advice – it was a female investor who came to her aid.

That support is part of a wider trend for investors to back businesses that seek to reduce gender inequality while generating financial returns, known as “gender lens” or “gender-smart” investing.

“She invested believing in the business, of course, but also understanding how difficult it is as a mum, as a wife, as women that sometimes we need a little push,” Russell told the Thomson Reuters Foundation of her backer.

Today the app, called Maya, is thriving, answering thousands of questions a day from users in India, Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia.

Photo courtesy of hodag.

Source: Reuters (link opens in a new window)

gender equality, gender lens, impact investing