Our Impact

We are committed to delivering top-tier returns while fostering significant, lasting change for underserved business and customers in North Africa and beyond. Impact is our core mission, and ESG ensures that this impact is pursued responsibly, forming distinct yet intertwined strategies. 

Impact Measurement

To measure and manage our impact, we use financial and operational KPIs and governance indices, to drive and benchmark performance across our partner companies. We incorporate impact measurement and management considerations in every phase of our underwriting and investment process and our investment decisions rest on the potential risk, return, and measurable impact of each opportunity to enable us to assess our companies in a robust and systematic way.

Annually, we disclose collective impact data in line with our impact measurement framework, focusing on the key performance indicators (KPIs) most prevalent and pertinent within our portfolio. Our impact is centered on three main areas: i) enhancing access to goods and services for consumers and businesses, ii) elevating quality through measures of affordability, product variety and range, convenience, and efficiency, and iii) fostering positive effects in our markets to promote inclusive growth and create environments that are favorable for investment.

What Impact Means to Us

We invest in companies that expand access to quality goods & services, create jobs, and increase resilience and growth for underserved consumers and SMEs in our markets. We focus on three core impact goals across all our investments - job creation, gender balance and supply chain decarbonization - as well as anything specific to the company or industry, e.g. expanding access to financial services. We link these to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and we work with our partner companies to set and monitor targets related to the SDGs and to measure quantifiable outcomes thus affording our funds and partner companies a common platform for promoting positive impact through our investments.

Job Creation

As growth investors, it is inherent for our partner companies to substantially expand their employee base over the investment period, as they enhance their business operations and market footprint. Our emphasis isn't solely on the magnitude of job creation, but also on the quality of jobs our partner companies provide and the level of training they invest in. We collaborate with our partners to guarantee their workforce earns a competitive living wage, and benefits from essentials such as healthcare coverage and pension plans, as well as professional development and skill enhancement opportunities, along with enhanced job security and stability.

Gender Balance

We firmly believe that amplifying the role of women in the workforce is a crucial component of a nation's growth and prosperity, and we advocate for this within our partner companies, for instance, by investing in care infrastructure. We adhere to the standards of the 2x Challenge, which identifies investments focused on gender, and we provide regular updates, underscoring our consistent and longstanding pledge to promote women's economic independence and gender equality among our partner companies. During our regular evaluations, we monitor the representation of women in the workforce, particularly in senior management positions and at the board level.

Supply Chain Decarbonization

Our conviction is that the companies we partner with have a responsibility to support the decarbonization of the supply chain and enhance resource preservation, e.g. we assess our carbon footprint, with the intent to decrease it, by quantifying the energy and electricity consumption across our portfolio. This is achieved through efficiency improvements, innovative products, processes and services, and involvement in green energy programs. We aim to support the objectives of the Paris Agreement on climate change to move towards Paris alignment for our future funds. 

Impact Case Studies

Inclusive Supply Chain: MaxAB, a digital B2B distribution platform, is revolutionizing the traditional retail market in North Africa by streamlining the fragmented, opaque, and credit-limited informal distribution channels that are vital for product delivery to consumers. Using digital technologies, data science, and embedded finance solutions, MaxAB not only empowers small retailers and suppliers but also addresses gender inequalities within distribution networks, leveraging digital transaction data to facilitate access to working capital, particularly for women who often face greater finance accessibility gaps. The platform is striving to enhance engagement with women-owned/led retailers, thereby increasing market share and sales while also introducing point of sale solutions to digitize payments and provide inclusive finance solutions. The resulting impact on the currently constrained informal economy is expected to be significant, promoting economic opportunities, supply chain efficiency, and job creation, thus aligning with Sustainable Development Goals 8.3, 9.3, and 8.5. MORE

Fast-moving consumer goods products typically pass-through multiple layers of wholesalers, distributors and sub-distributors before they end up in small shops and kiosks, the “traditional trade”. These distribution channels are largely informal, opaque, fragmented, and with limited access to supplier credit, but they are critical for getting products to consumers.

Our partner company MaxAB is addressing the challenges associated with complex distribution chains through its digital B2B distribution platform and integrated end to end supply chain solution. Founded in 2018 and currently employs over 4,000 employees in Egypt and Morocco, MaxAB is re-engineering the traditional retail market using digital technologies, data science, and embedded finance solutions designed to empower both small retailers and suppliers in North Africa. Among the many benefits of MaxAB’s supply chain solutions is the ability to identify gender inequalities in distribution networks, such as gaps in the participation of female distributors and retailers and differences in sales performance in addition to leveraging digital transaction data to facilitate access to working capital for retailers and distributors. This particularly beneficial for women as they often face larger gaps in access to finance. Addressing gender inequalities can enable women-owned/led traditional retailers to grow their business and reduces entrenched performance gaps between women and men led traditional retailers, leading to greater sales for manufacturers and more orders for B2B distribution platforms. Furthermore, women merchants play a key role in a company’s efforts to reach women consumers as traditional retailers play an important role in influencing the purchasing decisions of their customers. MaxAB is actively working to identify the number or share of traditional retailers that are owned/led by women to help its suppliers with better engagement to increase its market share and the sales of its products. In addition, MaxAB has started rolling out Point of Sale solutions to its traditional trade customers to digitize payments and empowering them with inclusive finance solutions and access to affordable credit to grow their businesses. 

We believe that the depth of impact will be significant for retailers who currently operate within the informal economy, and are constrained by a lack of access to working capital, low margins due to supply chain inefficiencies, and limited growth opportunities.

MaxAB currently has over 4,000 employees in Egypt and Morocco. Our investment will contribute towards providing economic opportunities through improved value chain and market integration and enhanced access to finance (SDG 8.3, 9.3) and creating jobs as per SDG 8.5: Achieving full and productive employment.

Sustainability in FMCG: Our partner company, Lilas, is a pioneering FMCG manufacturer in the region, demonstrating the employment opportunities and sophisticated supply chains that can stem from the manufacturing sector. By prioritizing inclusive employment, gender balance, and community involvement, Lilas is creating jobs, training opportunities, and contributing to local economic prosperity. Their approach to the supply-demand gap in the hygiene and detergent sectors involves offering quality, affordable products as an alternative to high-priced imports, reaching over 40,000 points of sale including rural populations across Tunisia. Sustainability is at the core of their operation; they've adopted practices like using a gas-powered co-generation boiler to reduce reliance on diesel generators and integrating recycled materials into their production process. With over 4,300 employees across Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Ivory Coast, and Senegal, 30% of whom are female, our investment in Lilas aligns with the Sustainable Development Goals 8.3 and 8.5 by promoting economic opportunities and job creation. MORE

Manufacturing is a route for creating employment opportunities and building more sophisticated supply chains that will have a positive impact on sustainable economic growth. Increasingly, manufacturers like our partner company Lilas are looking not only at optimizing costs but also at the environmental and social impact of production and the ways to improve sustainability.

Lilas’ transformation into a leading and regional FMCG manufacturer tackled the issues of inclusive employment and gender balance through a targeted recruitment strategy favoring women living in the neighboring local communities. Through local community hiring, the company created decent jobs and training opportunities and contributed to advancing economic prosperity and stability of its local communities. Not only did Lilas impact thousands of people and their families, but it also reached millions of customers as it expanded its product base. To address the growing supply-demand gap in the hygiene and detergent sectors, the company placed a focus on providing quality and affordable products to a wide segment of the population, catering to the needs of both middle class and low-income populations and offering an alternative to high-priced imported products and international brands. Lilas invested in building a supply chain network reaching more than 40,000 points of sale and expanded the accessibility of its products to rural populations across Tunisia. Lilas’ commitment to mitigating climate change and supporting the environment motivated the adoption and implementation of sustainable practices within its production processes. To eliminate reliance on diesel generators, Lilas installed a gas powered co-generation boiler that produces steam for the cellulose wadding manufacturing and electricity for its own consumption. As part of the company’s commitment to sustainable consumption and production, and to ensure its products remain affordable to reach a wide segment of the population, Lilas integrates recycled paper and plastic within its production process with 35%of its production being based on recycled paper and 15%of its recycled plastic being re-used.

Lilas employs currently over 4,300 people in Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Ivory Coast and Senegal, 30% of whom are female. This investment will contribute towards providing economic opportunities through improved value chain and market integration (SDG 8.3) and creating jobs as per SDG 8.5: Achieving full and productive employment.

Access to Healthcare: Cleopatra Hospitals Group (CHG), our partner company, is addressing Egypt's fragmented healthcare landscape characterized by underinvestment and demographic shifts. As Egypt's largest integrated private hospital group, CHG is enhancing patient care through technology investment and workforce training. The Group has implemented an integrated HIS/ERP system and developed CLINIcare pro®, a solution aimed at reducing antimicrobial resistance. A training academy was established, enabling more than 2,000 of its employees to receive individual training sessions in 2021 alone. CHG is committed to gender diversity, as evidenced by signing the Gender Diversity Pledge and implementing initiatives to boost women's representation in leadership. By FY'21, CHG had employed over 4,500 people, with women representing 36% of the workforce and holding 26% of management positions. Our investment in CHG aligns with Egypt's 2030 vision and contributes towards Sustainable Development Goals 3, 4.4, and 8.5 by enhancing health services, creating jobs, and improving skills training. MORE

The capacity of governments to serve the entire population's health needs is limited in many countries, including Egypt. The private sector is often crucial in filling these gaps, providing essential healthcare services where the public sector can't meet demand. Egypt's healthcare sector, in particular, has suffered from underinvestment and rapid demographic shifts, leading to a fragmented landscape with a shortage of quality healthcare services, and a dearth of beds relative to the population size.

Stepping into this healthcare gap is our partner company Cleopatra Hospitals Group (CHG), the largest integrated private hospital group in Egypt by both the number of hospital beds and operating hospitals. CHG's network includes six operational hospitals, three polyclinics, a leading IVF Centre, and a new 200-bed hospital in Greater Cairo. The Group is making concerted efforts to improve patient care by investing in the latest medical technology and training the next generation of medical practitioners.

CHG's commitment to quality and accessible care is underpinned by a robust digitalization strategy. The Group implemented a fully integrated HIS/ERP system across all its facilities, enabling patients to access their medical records seamlessly. To enhance patient care, CHG developed CLINIcare pro®, an in-house, web-based solution designed to curb excessive use of antimicrobials, thereby reducing antimicrobial resistance and related complications.

In line with its goal of fostering medical talent, a dedicated training academy for CHG employees and third-party healthcare staff was established, elevating the standard of healthcare professionals across the sector and subsequently improving patient care. CHG delivered training to over 2,000 of its employees in 2021 alone, amounting to over 4,500 individual training sessions. The Group also established a joint medical scholarship program for students in Upper Egypt and provides sponsorship and employment opportunities to final-year nursing students, thus ensuring a well-trained workforce that upholds CHG's high standards.

CHG's commitment to its staff goes beyond professional development; it also involves fostering a safe, diverse, and inclusive work environment. The Group signed the Gender Diversity Pledge in September 2021, affirming its commitment to achieving gender balance. Initiatives have been implemented to improve women's leadership skills and increase the representation of women in executive and management roles.

Our investment in CHG supports the enhancement of health services, increase public access to medical care, and broaden the Group's hospital footprint. Furthermore, this investment aligns with the Egyptian Government's vision for Egypt 2030 by expanding the number of quality healthcare beds available.

By the end of the 2021 fiscal year, CHG employed over 4,500 people, 36% of whom were women, and women held 26% of management positions. Our investment will contribute towards  SDG 3: Ensure healthy lives and well-being for all, creating jobs as per SDG 8.5: Achieving full and productive employment and offer improved skills training as per  SDG 4.4: Increasing the number of people who have relevant skills.

Selected Reporting