Members of the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance (the Lab) gathered in London to select the innovative climate finance solutions that will be accelerated in 2023. Lab members voted to choose six new models to channel investments in challenging sectors such as climate adaptation and gender equality.
“We are thrilled about the quality and breadth of the types of innovative financial solutions that we see in this new Lab cycle. It’s fantastic that our members continue to help the Lab expand our boundaries, focusing more on where we can have the highest impact on the ground,” said Dr Barbara Buchner, Global Managing Director of Climate Policy Initiative.
The Lab is an investor-led initiative that identifies, develops, and launches promising solutions to drive critical public and private investment in climate change in developing economies. Each year, the Lab competition selects promising, early-stage ideas for sustainable investment and rapidly develops these ideas into fundable, scalable investment vehicles and business models.
“This year, we were excited to introduce a Gender Equality stream and expand our Africa program,” said Lab Associate Director Ben Broché. “We need to see a rapid scale-up of investment across sectors, and the Lab is always keen to take on new challenges: since we launched nine years ago, the Lab has developed 62 solutions that have mobilised USD 3.5 billion for climate action in emerging markets.”
In 2023, the Lab received around 150 applications from leading asset managers, development finance institutions, global NGOs, prominent project developers, financial services firms, and entrepreneurs. The winners will undergo seven months of analysis, stress-testing, development, and preparation for launch later this year.
2023 Lab winners
Catalyst Climate Resilience Fund supports pre-seed climate adaptation startups that improve the resilience of vulnerable African communities, fostering a more robust ecosystem of climate adaptation innovations. BFA Global, a consulting firm headquartered in Kenya, spearheads the idea.
Climate Resilient Landscape Finance (CRLF) is a first-of-its-kind model where financiers, conservancy management, and landowners collectively share the risks and rewards of sustainable land management activities. The proponent is Platcorp, an established microlender and asset manager in Eastern and Southern Africa.
Impact Financing Facility for Climate-Focused Social Enterprises offers blended finance instruments to support social enterprises adopting climate-smart technologies and establishing a track record to access commercial capital. The idea proponent is Villgro, an Indian social enterprise incubator.
Lendable Emerging Market Sustainability-Linked Loan Fund provides loans to SMEs for implementing climate solutions. Borrowers who reach targets get lower interest, and the fund earns carbon credits. Proponent Lendable offers financing solutions for companies with a positive impact.
Social Infra Ventures (SIV) is a pan-African rental platform to service low and lower-middle-income families and vulnerable groups in Africa’s secondary cities designed around women’s needs. SIV will partner up with Cardano Development to pilot the idea in Morocco.
The VOX VERT Land Use Transition Fund finances the transition to sustainable agriculture in the Brazilian Amazon and Cerrado regions through a private credit fund with a blended finance structure. The proponents are Vert, a securitisation company, and Vox Capital, an impact investment house.
Ajibola Olalowo, Advisor, German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK), said: “The Lab has been successful in delivering impact over almost one decade. Investments in Lab ideas span the globe, including challenging sectors such as climate risk, nature-based solutions, sustainable cities, and gender equality. However, there is still work to be done in mobilizing private finance for climate action, and Lab’s ideas are crucial for strengthening private sector investments to keep 1.5° alive.”
Antha Williams, who leads Bloomberg Philanthropies’ environment program, said: “Innovative financial solutions that address the climate crisis are pivotal to transitioning to a low-carbon economy at the speed and scale necessary. The Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance’s innovative approach helps identify, develop, and scale pioneering financial instruments that are making a tangible impact in combating climate change. Bloomberg Philanthropies is delighted to support the India Lab to help transform promising ideas into viable investment opportunities that drive climate action in India.”
Sumaiya Sajjad, Head of the Technical Assistance Facility, FinDev Canada, said: “FinDev Canada is committed to advancing opportunities in the gender and climate nexus area through our investments and partnerships, which includes our support to the Lab. Women are disproportionately affected by climate change despite being at the forefront of adopting climate-smart solutions. The Lab is well positioned to support innovative solutions with an intentional gender approach and to capitalise on the growing momentum across the investment landscape to increase gender-responsive climate finance offerings.”
About the Lab
The Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance identifies, develops, and launches innovative finance instruments that can drive billions in private investment to action on climate change and sustainable development. Bloomberg Philanthropies, ClimateWorks Foundation, and the governments of Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States fund the Lab. Climate Policy Initiative serves as Secretariat.
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