Impact investor Accion raises $141 mn fintech fund
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Global impact investor Accion International has raised a $141 million fintech fund to invest in companies that offer access to financial services to underserved consumers and businesses in emerging markets, including Asia, it said in a statement. 

Accion Frontier Inclusion Fund will be managed by Quona Capital, a venture capital firm that supports fintech firms in emerging markets.

The fund raised capital from insurance companies, investment banks, asset managers, foundations, family offices and development finance institutions. It will focus on emerging markets in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Asia with a focus on India and Southeast Asia.

“Three billion people around the world are underserved by the financial sector, with limited or no access to quality savings, credit, insurance and payments,” said Michael Schlein, CEO and president of Accion. The fund will support innovators using technologies to help create a financial system that works for everyone, Schlein said. 

Monica Brand Engel, a founding partner at Quona Capital, said. “By identifying and supporting the most promising business models, the fund can produce a demonstration effect that inspires others to pursue inclusive technologies and compete in traditionally underserved communities.”

Over the last nine years, Accion has made more than 30 impact investments in startups that are finding new ways to meet the financial needs of the underserved. 

The investments made by Accion Frontier Inclusion Fund in India include NeoGrowth, IndiaMART and CreditMantri. Its Accion Gateway Fund has backed IFMR Holdings, Saija Finance and Swadhaar FinServe. It has also made commitments to invest in firms in Mexico, Brazil, Philippines, Africa and Argentina.

The fund’s investors include International Finance Corporation, AXA Impact Fund, Blue Haven Initiative, Calvert Equity Portfolio, Dalio Foundation, Heifer Foundation, IDP Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co, Mastercard, MetLife, PG Impact Investments and Prudential Financial Inc, among others.

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