18 January 2017


Australia to support the creation of an impact investment market in the Pacific

Today the Australia Government launched an innovative pilot program to improve economic development in the Pacific region as part of the Government’s new development paradigm. Pacific Readiness for Investment in Social Enterprise, known as Pacific RISE, is an Australian initiative to pioneer and facilitate a social impact investment market across the Pacific.

In many Pacific countries, economic growth isn’t keeping up with population growth. To support our neighbours’ progress, we need to consider new, innovative solutions, using a different ‘lens’ and utilising more effectively the drivers of development, particularly the private sector and women. Impact investing is one such innovation.

Globally, impact investment has grown rapidly in recent years, but an investment market is yet to be established in the Pacific. Impact investments are those that look beyond the financial return – they also aim to deliver measurable social and environmental impacts. By creating an impact investing market in the Pacific, Pacific RISE will create private sector partnerships made up of investors, intermediaries and businesses to leverage finance and ideas to achieve social and economic development outcomes, particularly for women and girls. Pacific RISE aims to introduce at least $5 million of new private investment capital into the Pacific over the next three years.

Impact investing products and services often target women and girls but rarely do investors use a gender analysis throughout the investment process. This use of gender lens investing is widespread in Asia, the Americas and other regions and now, through Pacific RISE, the Pacific region will benefit. Pacific RISE will use gender lens investing to incorporate gender into financial analysis to improve investments and promote equitable social change.

For more information, visit www.pacificrise.org

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Media Enquiries: felicity@felicityspurrett.com or phone +61 413 894 445

About Pacific RISE

Pacific Readiness for Investment in Social Enterprise (Pacific RISE) is a pilot initiative of the Australian Government, implemented by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) established to pioneer and facilitate a social impact investment market in the Pacific. Wherever possible, Pacific RISE will promote greater investment into businesses that improve economic and social outcomes for women and girls using gender lens investing analysis tools and approaches.

Initially, Pacific RISE will work with stakeholders (including investment funds and intermediaries) to learn and understand more about the Pacific and its social impact needs. Pacific RISE will then identify real investment opportunities in social enterprise businesses in the region.

About the Pacific RISE launch

Pacific RISE will launch on 18 January 2017 in Melbourne with an intimate launch for identified impact investors. There will be three components to the launch:

Official launch and welcome

Guest will be welcome by a representative of the Australian Government who will outline the Australian Government’s role in supporting economic development in the Pacific.

• Why invest in the Pacific?

Using seed funding from DFAT, The Difference Incubator has worked with Pacific companies and Benefit Capital to design and, recently, launch the Genesis Fund. The fund is Pacific focused and has just invested in the Samoa Coconut Cluster. Speakers include Paul Steele (Benefit Capital – Genesis Fund), Anthea Smits (The Difference Incubator) and Edwin Tamasese (Samoa Coconut Cluster) to share insights into the opportunities that the Pacific offers for investment.

• Using Gender Lens Investing to get better investments

Global specialist Joy Anderson will talk about the role of Gender Lens Investing globally and how it can be applied to the Pacific. Kate Nethercott Wilson (Pacific RISE Gender Specialist) will also provide her experience in the Pacific and how gender lens investing can empower women and girls.

More information contact:
Felicity Spurrett
Communications Specialist
Pacific RISE
E: felicity@felicityspurrett.com
M: +61 413 894 445