Panama, May 21, 2020- IFC, a member
of the World Bank Group, is investing US$26 million in private equity fund,
L Catterton Latin America III (LCLA III) which will provide capital for
mid-sized companies focused on the consumer sector in Latin America. The
fund will help spur job creation, increase market productivity, as well
as support women entrepreneurship in the region. LCLA III is managed by
L Catterton, a global fund manager, and has a mandate to invest in Latin
America, with specific focus on Brazil, Colombia and Mexico.
The Latin America region is trailing other emerging markets on gender diversity
in private equity with only 5 percent of investee companies led by women,
which is lower than the meager 7 percent across all emerging markets, according
to a recent IFC report.
The fund is expected to help contribute to closing the gender finance gap
as many consumer companies in Latin America are led by women entrepreneurs.
L Catterton has set a target of investing 20 percent in companies owned
or operated by women.
“Lack of access to private equity funding is a key barrier for the growth
of women-led companies,” said Georgina Baker, IFC Regional Vice President
for Latin America and the Caribbean and Europe and Central Asia. “Supporting
women-led business in Latin America will encourage others to see the credible
business case that exists for greater gender diversity in private equity,”
The fund has already completed its first transaction in a dental company
in Brazil that provides affordable services to lower middle socio-economic
class, and the business is expected to grow exponentially in the next five
The investment in LCLA III is US$25 million from IFC and US$1 million financing
from the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi), which is a partnership
between 14 countries and multilateral banks that seeks to unlock financing
for women entrepreneurs.
By providing capital to private equity and venture capital, IFC can play
a critical role in development, helping to build the dynamic, job-creating
companies that drive prosperity, provide essential goods and services,
and strengthen the middle class. In FY20 so far, IFC has invested a total
of $90 million in private equity and venture capital funds to support businesses
in Latin America.
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
where they are needed most. 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.
The Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) is a collaborative partnership
among fourteen governments and eight multilateral development banks. Housed
in the World Bank Group, We-Fi seeks to unlock billions of dollars in financing
to tackle the full range of barriers facing women entrepreneurs—increasing
access to finance, markets, technology, and mentoring, while strengthening
policy, and legal and regulatory frameworks. As one of the We-Fi implementing
partners, IFC supports private sector clients with investments and advisory
services to expand financial services and market access for women-owned/led
firms, as well as increasing the capacity of women entrepreneurs to run
high-growth businesses. For more information, visit www.we-fi.org.