May 10, 2019 / News

Leapfrog announces £538m impact fund

By Joe McGrath, ESG Clarity

Investors in the new fund include family offices and insurance giants

Leapfrog announces £538m impact fund

Dedicated impact specialist Leapfrog Investments has raised $700m (£538m) in a private equity fund to invest in healthcare and financial companies in emerging markets.

The money raised was from a range of investors including insurers, pension funds, development finance institutions, family offices, foundations and asset managers.

In a statement, the company said it had originally only targeted $600m, so it was thrilled to have surpassed this by some $100m.

“Today’s announcement marks an unprecedented level of commitment to independent impact investment managers, with a new fund backed by diverse best-in-class institutional investors,” said Andrew Kuper, founder and chief executive officer of Leapfrog Investments.

“It also marks an important moment for responsible private equity. As our third fund and largest fund, it is a decisive demonstration that meeting the real needs of under-served people is great business.”

The fund has already deployed some of its latest investment pool. Among the companies to benefit are Neogrowth, a specialist in unsecured lending to micro, small and medium sized businesses in India and Goodlife Pharmacy, the largest provider of healthcare services in East Africa.

Other investments include Pyramid Pharma, an African medical distributor and Ascent Meditech, a manufacture and distributor of orthopaedic products in India.

Leapfrog disclosed some of the companies that had backed the new fund. They include Pactworld, the Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation. Insurance investors include Axa XL, Hannover Re, QBE and Prudential Financial.

“We want to substantially increase impact investing for a sustainable world,” said Philippe Le Houérou, chief executive officer of IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group and a lead investor in the fund.

“By investing in this fund, IFC is expanding our long-standing partnership with Leapfrog and together we will drive this investment toward financial inclusion and health access. We want more and more investors who are looking to do well while also doing good.”