Investisseurs & Partenaires (I&P) has closed its Afrique Entrepreneurs 2 (IPAE 2) fund, after reaching €75m.
According to a release by APO Group on behalf of I&P on Wednesday, the impact investing group dedicated to small and medium-sized African companies has invested in four Small and Medium-scale Enterprises and aims to support more than 30 companies in sub-Saharan Africa by 2022.
IPAE 2 was launched in December 2017 with a first closing at €50 million. The second closing amounts to €25 million and allows several renowned investors to join the fund, including the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries (BIO), the Stichting fondsbeheer DGGF lokaal MKB, Bpifrance, Crédit Coopératif, FPS Mirova Solidaire and the IDA 18 IFC-MIGA Private Sector Window, which was created by the World Bank Group to mobilise private sector investment in IDA-only countries, with a focus on fragile and conflict-affected states.
The IPAE 2 fund brings together a diversified panel of investors, including public investors (IFC, PROPARCO, European Investment Bank, BIO, DGGF, Bpifrance), private and corporate investors (AXA Impact Fund, Société Générale), as well as several family offices and foundations.
It is on track to reach its target size of €90 million and will complete a third and final closing by the end of June. It is currently one of the largest funds in the impact-investing sector dedicated to African SMEs. While SMEs are increasingly identified as key actors for inclusive growth on the continent, they still face many obstacles, including notably access to finance and skills.
I&P has also raised a technical assistance budget of more than €2.9 million from several of its public investors, which will complement the team’s support through expert missions in the company’s fields of activity or in the social, environmental and governance areas.