|Primary impact area||Impact area||Geographic location of impact||Investment commencement||SDG alignment|
|Social||Financial Inclusion & healthcare||Asia and Africa - Emerging Markets||2018||
Rapid developments in Africa and Asia have impacted the dynamics of global markets. Billions of emerging consumers are now joining the global economy, without access to many of the basic services required for success. By investing in companies that provide essential financial and health services across developing countries, LeapFrog Emerging Consumer Fund III is helping to meet these growing needs at scale. LeapFrog’s companies currently serve 188 million people.
QBE, through Premiums4Good, is an investor in the USD 743m fund, joining a number of investors across the globe in the fund’s mission to change lives in communities in countries like Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, India, Indonesia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka.
The fund’s investments to date include WorldRemit, which enables fast secure international money transfer, and NeoGrowth, a digitally enabled financial company that provides business loans and insurance in India. The fund has also made investments in East African healthcare provider Goodlife Pharmacy, providing diagnostics and basic health care in communities where public healthcare is limited, as well as Ascent Meditech, a business that manufactures and delivers orthopaedic products across India.
Through these and additional investments, the fund strives to impact the lives of millions of people as well as to generate robust financial returns for investors.
By investing in the provision of essential services, the fund is a powerful enabler of financial inclusion and access to healthcare. It supports the elimination of poverty, contributes to healthier, more productive communities and helps drive economic success. Significantly, the fund targets reaching more than 70 million emerging consumers over the next five years.
"QBE was the first Australian insurance group to back LeapFrog’s new impact investment fund. By investing in high-growth companies in emerging Asia and Africa, the fund aims to reach 70 million low-income people with healthcare and financial tools. Most of those people will be accessing these essential services for the first time, helping lift themselves and their families into security. At over $1billion, LeapFrog Fund III is the largest equity fund ever raised by a pure impact investor. As a key participant, QBE is also sending a powerful signal to the country and the world that it is possible to achieve Profit with Purpose."
—Andy Kuper, CEO, Leapfrog Investments
Case study: WorldRemit
WorldRemit is a payments and remittances technology company, founded by Chairman Ismail Ahmed, enabling money transfer in developing countries – and helping change the face of business in developing communities.
As a schoolboy in Somaliland, Ismail Ahmed’s brother was one of the tens of thousands who crossed the Red Sea to work in the Gulf states. “It was kind of a gold rush, and I became a recipient of remittances from my brother, who would send money back. Then, when I came to the UK to study on a scholarship, I became a sender. I saw remittances from both sides.”
This early exposure to the business of money transfers led Ahmed to later set up WorldRemit, which not only offers traditional means to transfer and receive money, but as a digital disrupter, also includes mobile and airtime top-up, reaching emerging consumers with fast, secure, low-cost remittance services. The company is also a trailblazer in international transfers to mobile money accounts, dramatically reducing both corruption and costs faced by low-income consumers – often lowering remittance costs between 9 and 15 per cent to 2 per cent.
WorldRemit currently reaches several million migrants and their families in over 100 countries – enabling the economic growth and success of individuals and businesses across the globe. However, with an estimated two billion people worldwide still classified as unbanked, but owning a mobile phone, there remains a significant opportunity to further disrupt the industry and reach these emerging consumers. The investment made through the LeapFrog Emerging Consumer Fund III will support the company’s plans to reach 10 million customers connected to emerging markets by 2020.
Source: Premiums4Good Investment Impact Report 2018-2019