British International Investment

Introducing CDC’s Gender Toolkit

At CDC we recognise the barriers that women in our markets face and as an impact investor, we have been working to close gender gaps, as well as demonstrate the social and economic value of investing in women.

A key part of this work is helping to move gender-smart investing from being viewed as niche into the mainstream. The feedback we increasingly hear from companies and funds is that they want to integrate gender into their processes and operations, but often don’t know where to start.

In response we have created a free-to-use, accessible toolkit aimed at investors and companies working in our markets. The Gender Toolkit brings together resources, guidance, and templates that focus on gender-smart investing, gender diversity and inclusion, and gender considerations across a range of sectors.

The toolkit provides practical guidance and steps to take, drawing from our own experience as well as best practice across the industry. Central to this is the 2X Challenge, which has provided the framework for this . The 2X Challenge is a commitment by 11 leading DFIs to mobilise over US$3 billion in investment capital to support women’s economic empowerment in emerging markets.

Some key features of the Gender Toolkit are:

  • Guidance on the 2X Challenge and conducting 2X assessment
  • Gender-smart investing tools to use throughout the investment process
  • Templates to put together a ‘Gender Action Plan’
  • Guidance notes on diversity and inclusion in the workplace
  • Comprehensive mapping of key gender risks and opportunities emerging from current trends

Gender across key sectors

A key feature of the Gender Toolkit are the sector pages, which aim to support investors and fund managers to identify sector-specific gender-based opportunities. They include the business and impact case for investing in each sector, suggested screening and due diligence questions, and emerging trends that represent both gender risks and opportunities.

Collaborating with ESG

Those who are familiar with our existing resources will notice that the Gender Toolkit looks and feels very similar to our ESG Toolkit. That’s because since the ESG Toolkit was first launched it has attracted thousands of users across our key markets and the team’s support has been crucial to the development of this content.

Building the field

In November 2020 we published with IFC, Private Equity and Value Creation: A Fund Managers Guide to Gender-Smart Investing, providing fund managers with a roadmap on how to strengthen gender diversity at the firm level, and incorporate a gender lens into investment decision-making at the portfolio level. Many of the tools in the toolkit are mentioned in this guide and acts a supplement to the full report.

We hope that you find the Gender Toolkit useful and informative. In early 2021 we plan to host a series of in-depth training and webinars on these tools. Check back on our Gender page for updates.

If you have any feedback or questions, please email [email protected]


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