Geneva, 3rd October 2023 – The Peace Dividend Initiative (PDI), a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to harnessing market forces for peace, and Symbiotics, the leading market access platform for impact investing, today announced the Peace Venture Fund, a partnership between the two organizations to invest in peace-supporting businesses and support entrepreneurs in fragile and at-risk countries.
As a quarter of the world’s population, representing 2 billion people, live in conflict-affected areas, SDG 16 (Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions) remains one of the most underfunded Sustainable Development Goals. To date, the main form of private sector engagement in peace-making has been philanthropic, and for a minimal amount – the global annual funding for peacemakers is around USD 200 million and represents less than 1% of philanthropic donations.
The Peace Venture Fund (PVF), the first of its kind, will adopt a venture and impact investment approach to encourage entrepreneurship in fragile and at-risk countries. It will allow a quick deployment of private capital in areas otherwise ignored by traditional market mechanisms. The PVF leverages PDI’s access and expertise in business creation and development in fragile contexts and Symbiotics’ experience in impact investing in frontier markets.
The PVF aims to deliver a peace + profit return over 7 to 10 years, with the peace impact being assessed and tracked by the innovative +P framework. The +P developed by PDI blends 20 years of peace-making impact measurement with classic business metrics to allow a flexible system of ensuring businesses within the PVF are and remain peace supporting.
Through partnerships with peace mediators and deep and trusted access in fragile and at-risk areas, PDI has been leading the charge in supporting entrepreneurs and creating innovative and field-tested ways to design and deliver peace-supporting investment, ultimately seeking to harness market forces for peace. Offering investment, asset management and capacity building services, Symbiotics is a global leader in impact investing, dedicated to private markets in emerging and frontier economies.
“Over the past years, we have seen tremendous entrepreneurial potential in the countries where we operate, and ventures with the true potential to re-shape socioeconomic dynamics in favor of peace. Unfortunately, those entrepreneurs, many of whom are the most innovative and resilient one could meet, are unable to access capital to grow their ventures. We are very excited to partner with Symbiotics to create the Peace Venture Fund and provide support to peace entrepreneurs. The Peace Venture Fund provides investors and financiers with a new avenue to sustainably create a lasting peace-supporting impact, while gaining valuable access to developing markets.” said Liam Foran, CEO of the Peace Dividend Initiative.
“Symbiotics is very pleased to have been chosen by PDI as the preferred investment manager and fund management company for this exciting and innovative public private partnership. We strongly believe that investing in conflict-affected areas can support peace-building and peace-making momentum. The fund is a one-of-its-kind, addressing directly SDG16, which hopefully will boost capital flows for such an important sustainable investment objective. With our footprint in 95 emerging and frontier economies, and our strong investment infrastructure and practice, we look forward to making this happen with PDI.” said Roland Dominicé, Managing Director of Symbiotics Group.
About the Peace Dividend Initiative
The Peace Dividend Initiative (PDI) is a peace-dividend accelerator dedicated to harnessing market forces for peace. PDI bridges the gap between peace mediation and economic actors through dialogue, incubation, and investment.Headquartered in Geneva as a not for profit foundation, PDI is connected to peacemakers, international organisations, governments, investors, and entrepreneurs. peacedividends.org
Symbiotics is the leading market access platform for impact investing, dedicated to private markets in emerging and frontier economies. The group offers investment, asset management and capacity building services. Since 2005, we have originated over 7,501 investments representing more than USD 9.4 billion for 575 companies in 95 countries. We manage an aggregate portfolio of USD 2.9 billion spread across 23 funds and mandates. Our portfolio companies have also benefited from over 145 technical assistance projects worth more than USD 18 million. symbioticsgroup.com
Julie Mandoyan, Head, Incubation and Strategic Partnerships, Peace Dividend Initiative
Samy Derradji, Head of Corporate Communication, Symbiotics