Along the way, I&P is carving out a unique niche for itself in the world of small and medium enterprise loans. The investment group will only work with African businesses that have a record of outstanding social and environmental impact. It also requires businesses meet a set of strict criteria, including no use of child labor, implementing anti-discrimination policies, managing supply chains responsibly and fighting corruption.
In exchange, I&P addresses a major need in the “missing middle,” the segment of businesses that are too big for many microfinance institutions, but too small for traditional capital sources. I&P offers relatively large loans, at lengthier loan terms, giving companies the space and time to grow.
Loans will be between $10,000 to $50,000. One example is this $15,000 loan that funded within a day, for a business that replaces diesel power generators with solar plants for uninterrupted access to clean water.
I&P works with its selected entrepreneurs as business coaches and to and strengthen their capacity. The organization also monitors social and financial results closely. The hope is that the combination of patient capital and knowledge will contribute to the expansion of locally-grown value across Africa.