British International Investment

Accion Digital Transformation Fund

IndiaIndonesiaAfricaAsiaFinancial services

Accion Digital Transformation Fund (“ADTx”) will invest growth equity for minority stakes in c. 10 companies that lend to underbanked and unbanked populations and MSMEs in South Asia, Africa, Southeast Asia and Latin America.

Our investment

Description of the investment.

Backing an experienced fund manager to invest in the digitisation of microfinance platforms to support improved financial inclusion, management and resilience, and increase economic opportunities.

ADTx will leverage its Accion’s advisory services business, GLAS, to provide strategic support to investee companies to undergo digital transformations. The primary benefits of digitally transforming will be deeper customer engagement which will ultimately enable the FIs to offer needs-driven products to their clients.

Impact information

Applies to investments made from 2019 onwards. The tabs in this section define what we expect to achieve through the investment, assessing the potential impact of the investment against six dimensions of impact. You can find more details on our methodology of assessing impact here.

What?

Impact

Improved financial inclusion, management and resilience and improved economic opportunities via access to credit and digitization of FIs

How?

Primary Secondary

Direct: By injecting capital into MFPs, Accion will support business growth, expansion to new products and potentially to new customers. GLAS will conduct a digital readiness assessment and implementation roadmap as part of Accion’s DD prior to making investments. Accion, as a shareholder, would aim to bring consensus among all stakeholders on the digitisation strategy and guide the management team through their digitisation journey. Through digitisation, MFPs will improve operational efficiencies (e.g., payment integration, automated credit approvals) that will allow them to scale and improve customer experience: this is expected to result in more relevant and accessible financial products to customers. Individual customers are expected to see improvement in financial inclusion, management, and resilience, and MSE customers are expected to see business growth.

Catalysing markets: While the extent of this impact will vary by region (e.g., more in Africa but less in India), demonstrating the commercial case of digitisation of MFPs can bring more strategic focus and resources for digitisation. As competitors see the benefits of digitisation (i.e., increased customer engagement, reduced operating expenses), they are likely to also adopt digitisation. Accion has a track record to help build this market by partnering with credible organisations such as the Mastercard Foundation, running sector-leading conferences and producing widely quoted reports on digital transformation.

Who?

Stakeholder Geography Characteristics
Customers

~30% Africa, ~40% South Asia and ~30% SE Asia

Expected to be >30% low-income individuals and 50-70% of customers are expected to be women.

How much?

Scale Depth/Duration

Potential for large-scale reach to customer segments given focus on digital channels.

Given the focus of MFPs is on un(der)served segments, the impact is expected to be more accessible and relevant products for their customers

Contribution/additionality

Contribution/additionality

Financial: Given the lack of scalable, profitable standalone MFPs, especially across Africa, DFI capital is still required. In addition, BII’s capital will help bring the fund to its target close size. Value Add: Improved impact monitoring for reach to low-income Mobilisation: n/a

Impact score

Impact score (at point of investment)

The Impact Score is a tool to help us manage our performance against our strategic impact objectives. It is designed to incentivise investments that support our productive, sustainable, and inclusive objectives. You can find out more here.

The Impact Score is published for investments made from 2022 onwards. The Impact Scores are calculated at the point of investment. We publish the Impact Scores of new investments annually, once the information has been externally assured by an independent third party.

6

Environmental and social information

  • Environmental and social summary

    A high-level description of the environmental and social aspects of the investment. This may include a summary of key environmental and social risks identified during environmental and social due diligence (ESDD); key elements of an environmental and social action plan (ESAP); or ways in which we plan to support the investee improve environmental and social standards, such as through their environmental and social management system (ESMS); as well as any other priority areas agreed with the investee.

  • Environmental and social risk

    A risk category rating, which indicates the level of environmental and social risk associated with an investment. For an explanation of the categorisations used, see here. We consistently provide an environmental and social risk category for all investments screened from 2023 onwards.

Environmental and social summary

Our focus is on the continued development of the manager’s ESMS, with an additional focus on climate change risk identification and management, and safeguarding. We agreed an ESAP focused on updates to internal safeguarding and grievance mechanisms, the establishment of an ESG committee and the engagement of a dedicated internal ESG resource.

Environmental and social risk

Medium-Low

Reporting and Complaints Mechanism

The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism allows anyone outside BII to report alleged breaches of the business integrity or environmental and social provisions of BII’s Policy on Responsible Investing. This includes breaches made by BII, a BII investee, or a portfolio company of a fund in which BII has invested. The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism Rules are available here. Reports and complaints can be submitted by email to [email protected] or by mail. See more details on our Reporting and Complaints Mechanism here.

For any other general enquiries contact us at [email protected]

  • Key facts

    First published

    When the investment was first published on the website database.

    :
    October 2023
    Last updated

    When the last quarterly update of the website database occurred.

    :
    June 2024
    Project number

    An identifier number shared by investments in the same project.

    :
    D4998
    Status

    The current status of the investment (green flag for active and red flag for exited).

    :
    Active
    Region

    The geographical region where the country is located. We currently invest in Africa, South Asia, South East Asia and the Caribbean. In 2023, BII’s investment mandate was extended allowing it to invest in regional funds linked to Ukraine, with the majority of activity expected to begin post-war. Investments outside these regions were made prior to 2012 under previous investment mandates.

    :
    Africa, Asia
    Sector

    We prioritise those sectors that facilitate development and need our capital the most. Our priority sectors contribute towards many of the Sustainable Development Goals. They range from investing in the power infrastructure that will provide people with better access to electricity, to investing in financial institutions that direct capital to the individuals and businesses that need it the most.

    :
    Financial services

    We provide capital in the following ways: directly – through direct equity, direct debt, guarantees and other non-intermediated financial instruments; and indirectly – principally through investment funds.

    For direct investments and fund investments, this is the date BII committed capital to the investments. This is typically the date on which legal agreements are signed by all parties.

    For the portfolio companies of our fund investments, this is the date (either the month or the quarter) on which the fund committed capital to the portfolio company.

    For direct equity investments, this is the date at which British International Investment exited the investment.

    For debt investments, this is the date at which the final debt repayment was made.

    For funds, this is the date at which the fund was terminated.

    For underlying fund investments, this is the date at which the fund manager exited the investment.

    The total amount committed, per financial instrument, per investment, on the date BII becomes subject to a binding legal obligation to provide funding or assume a contingent liability. This information is provided in US dollars.

    For direct investments, this is the amount that BII has committed to the business or project. For fund investments, this is the amount BII has committed to the fund.

    The currency in which the investment was made.

    Investment type :
    Fund
    Start date :
    April 2023
    Amount :
    $20m
    Currency of investment :
    USD
    Fund Manager:
    Accion Impact Management, LLC
    Domicile

    The company or investment fund’s place of incorporation.

    :
    USA

Investments made by this fund into companies:

For further information about these companies, visit https://www.accion.org/

Investment name Country Region Sector Start date Status
Annapurna Finance Private Limited India South Asia Financial services December 2023 Active
IKF Finance Limited India South Asia Financial services March 2023 Active
PT Amartha Nusantara Raya Indonesia Rest of the World Financial services December 2023 Active

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