Villgro Philippines and xchange, two of the leading impact incubators in the Philippines, have recently formed a partnership to boost impact investment activity in the country. With decades of combined experience in incubating and investing in impact enterprises in India, Africa, and the Philippines, this partnership aims to leapfrog the Philippine impact ecosystem and contribute to building a more resilient, inclusive, and equitable country by supporting and funding impact enterprises. This collaboration has created the Impact Pioneers Network, a first-of-its-kind impact investing network.
The network comes from a recognized need for more robust angel investing activities locally. While there exist international and regional impact investment funds with interest to invest in the Philippines, many of them lack a firm local presence. Moreover, these firms tend to provide capital upwards of USD 500,000 leaving behind early-stage impact enterprises in need of risk capital ranging from USD 25,000 to USD 500,000. The goal of Impact Pioneers Network is to catalyze local capital among high net worth individuals (HNWIs), family offices, corporations, and foundations for the benefit of high-potential impact enterprises within the Philippines. The Network will provide services such as deal sourcing, due diligence, and deal closure to ease the barriers commonly encountered by investors, and provide networking opportunities to further bridge the gap for enterprises to connect with local investors.
"This is certainly an exciting time to join hands with xchange with whom we share a strong ethos,” says Priya Thachadi, Co-founder and CEO at Villgro Philippines. "While there need to be improvements in the ecosystem around infrastructure, logistics, and policies, one of the biggest challenges for these high-potential enterprises continues to be the lack of risk capital to stress test their models and prepare for scale."
"The risk capital that flows into impact enterprises will allow the enterprises to build innovative, market-based solutions that address our wicked problems that ultimately will benefit the marginalized and underserved, " says Gregorie Moral-Perez, Director at xchange. “Thus we have joined hands to come together as a community, as a space, and whether you’re in entrepreneurship or impact-first, we'd love for you to join our network, and together let's build a just, inclusive, and the sustainable Philippines."
In 2021, Impact Pioneers Network kicked off its custom Learning Journey with its first investor members to guide them through the process of impact investing. This Learning Journey provided them with first-hand learning experiences on due diligence and investment deliberations and access to tools and resources, while also gaining access to a live deal pipeline. The 10-week program comprehensively covers the entire investment process, immersion activities, and relationship building that are key to the emergence of impact investors. Furthermore, investors learn not only by gaining knowledge on the investing process but also by actively participating in investment deals by the end of the program. The Impact Pioneers Learning Journey has also proven to be an opportune avenue for impact enterprises to receive such funding from aspiring investors.
Impact Pioneers Network has been generously supported by the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).