India’s Impact Investment Leaders Launch Social Finance India in New Delhi

May 2018
India, May, 14 2018 - Its first task will be to build large outcome funds and fund of funds, including two high-profile $1 billion funds to be launched this year at the GSG’s 2018 Impact Summit in Delhi on 8-9 October.

Social Finance Global Network (SFGN) and The Global Steering Group for Impact Investment (GSG) today announced the launch of Social Finance India (SF-IND) and first three of its Directors- Rajiv Lall, Ashish Dhawan, and, Vikram Gandhi. Rajiv Lall will Chair the initiative. SF- IND will be a new Section 8 non-profit intermediary which will galvanize the Indian impact investment space. Social Finance India’s first two products- India Impact Fund of Funds (IIFF) and India Education Outcomes Fund (IEOF) will launch in 2018. SF-IND also launched its website,

Social Finance India joins the global network of Social Finance UK, Social Finance US, and Social Finance Israel to mobilize investment capital at scale to drive social change. SF-IND will collaborate with governments, nonprofits, for-profit impact enterprises, philanthropic foundations, and impact investors to scale up outcome focused and SDG-aligned impact programs.

The SF-IND Board will comprise Rajiv Lall, MD and CEO, IDFC Bank; Ashish Dhawan, Founder, Central Square Foundation; and Vikram Gandhi, Founder, ASHA Impact and a Senior Lecturer at the Harvard Business School. The SF-IND Advisory Council will include Sir Ronald Cohen, Chairman, Global Steering Group (GSG); David Hutchison, CEO, Social Finance UK; Tracy Palandjian, CEO and Co- Founder, Social Finance USA; Yaron Neudorfer, CEO of Social Finance Israel, Vivek Pandit, Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company; and Nishith Desai, Founder and Managing Partner, Nishith Desai Associates.

Its first task will be to build large outcome funds and fund of funds, including two high-profile $1 billion funds to be launched this year at the GSG’s 2018 Impact Summit in Delhi on 8-9 October. These funds will give a huge fillip to India’s Impact Investment market, which according to McKinsey & Company1 attracts $1.1 billion annually. According to McKinsey study, between 2010-2016, India attracted $5.2 billion, growing at 14% CAGR and delivering 11% weighted average IRR while improving the lives of 60-80 million beneficiaries.

The India Education Outcomes Fund (IEOF) is looking to attract $700m of investment to improve educational outcomes by supporting initiatives across India. it is the first fund of its kind in education. The India Impact Fund of Funds (IIFF) will unlock long-term affordable debt to finance intermediaries and impact enterprises in a variety of sectors, including renewable energy, financial inclusion, and healthcare. The fund is being incubated by SF-IND, the GSG and UNSIF (United Nations SDG Impact Finance).

Today, SF-IND also welcomes David Hutchison, CEO, Social Finance UK to New Delhi to discuss its plans. David will meet the new board members, welcome SF-IND to SFGN and learn more about SF- IND’s business plans at its second of three stakeholder consultations for IIFF and IEOF.

David Hutchison, CEO, Social Finance UK, said, “I am very excited by the launch of Social Finance India today. We look forward to working closely with our Indian partners and welcoming them to the Social Finance Global Network. The bold agenda in education, affordable housing, skill development and other critical sectors that India is currently addressing will require innovative collaboration with the private sector. I hope that some of the learning of our work in the UK and other countries, which has driven significant impact, will support the growth of a vibrant new intermediary in the Indian ecosystem."

Ashish Dhawan, Board Member, SF-IND said, “Social impact bonds are an innovative instrument to drive pay for performance in the social sector. Already 100+ bonds have been issued globally and we can learn from the nuances in making this asset class effective. SF-IND's primary objective is to eventually get the Indian Government to adopt an outcomes based approach to funding programs.”

Vikram Gandhi, Board Member, SF-IND commented, “Vikram Gandhi, Board Member, SF-IND commented, “I am delighted to partner the Social Finance Global Network (SFGN), Sir Ronald Cohen, the GSG, and my colleagues, to help India build a catalytic new non-profit intermediary which will unlock impact capital at scale with vehicles like IIFF and IEOF. I hope my investment banking, impact investing and now academic background will help me contribute to this excellent and unique initiative envisioned to address the social and environmental challenges in India, by ultimately funding talented impact entrepreneurs who are motivated to solve these problems.”

Amit Bhatia, CEO, GSG said, “GSG is thrilled to bring together the pioneering, Social Finance Global Network (SFGN) and Indian Impact Investment leaders, to catalyze the formation of Social Finance India and its two $1 billion inaugural Funds- IIFF and IEOF- to finance social and environmental outcomes. Social Finance India’s strategy to focus on building wholesale funds to deliver sustainable funding for asset managers and impact entrepreneurs will make it a truly unique institution to serve the nation.”

Source : CNBC

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