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IFC Issues its First Social Bond Targeting US Retail Investors



Washington, D.C., October 4, 2019—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has issued its first social bond targeting US retail investors interested in achieving positive social impacts in emerging markets, including in healthcare, education, and supporting women entrepreneurs.  

The inaugural Social Impact Note, which pays a 1.70% fixed coupon and features a semi-annual call option after the second year, raised $2.9 million for select projects including in countries like Haiti.

The proceeds of the bond, which is part of IFC’s Social Impact Notes Program, will finance projects that aim to improve access to affordable healthcare and education, and socioeconomic advancement. The funds will also be used to support financial institutions that lend to small and medium enterprises as well as women entrepreneurs.

The Social Impact Notes are distributed exclusively through Incapital’s Legacy™ platform.

John Gandolfo, IFC Vice President & Treasurer said: “IFC’s inaugural Social Impact Note shows there is investor appetite for investments in ESG. The issuance has attracted US investors interested in targeting their financial investments to achieve positive social outcomes for vulnerable populations.”

Sylvain Kakou, IFC Resident Representative for Haiti said: “We believe this inaugural issuance is a positive development with investors participating to support and promote projects with high impact for the people at a local level living in the most challenging environments, such as Haiti.”  

“Fixed income investors are increasingly seeking opportunities that demonstrate impact,” said Jodi Waber, Managing Director for Incapital. “These IFC Social Impact Notes focused on projects in Haiti have captured the interest of individual investors served by our broker-dealer partners. This ongoing capital markets solution for targeting specific development needs will continue to play an important role in funding IFC's work."

About IFC’s Social Impact Notes Program

As investors are becoming more interested in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, IFC has expanded its retail Impact Notes Program into the social bond space, where proceeds are invested exclusively in projects aimed at achieving positive social outcomes for underserved populations.

Earlier this year, IFC launched the Social Impact Notes Program, supporting small and medium size entrepreneurs’ access to finance while providing IFC investors with opportunities to invest with impact in countries such as Haiti.  

IFC showcased eligible projects to be funded with the proceeds of the Program, at an event welcoming the broad impact investor community, finance and project experts, as well as members of the Haitian community.

Since issuing its first Social Impact Note on September 16, 2019, IFC has used a portion of the proceeds under the Program to disburse funds to Ayiti Leasing in Haiti. The funds will enable Ayiti Leasing to provide more leasing loans to entrepreneurs for transportation, earthmoving equipment, healthcare and medical equipment, and industrial equipment. Leasing is a financial instrument that can help small and medium-sized businesses obtain financing without the typical requirements that commercial banks would consider for loans.

About IFC
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In fiscal year 2019, we delivered more than $19 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.

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Emma-Kate Symons
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