Developing World Markets (DWM) has been an impact investor in emerging and frontier markets for 25 years. They continue to be pioneers with their latest impact report in which they adopt the industry’s newest impact benchmark.

The Global Impact Investment Network (GIIN) continues to drive the evolution of impact investing through the creation of the benchmark

The goal is to allow impact firms to compare their impact performance with their peers. Financial comparisons are ubiquitous, but so far comparison of social and environmental results, at

the investment level, has been difficult.

The first stage of the GIIN’s benchmarking program focuses on the area of ‘financial inclusion’, which is a key pillar of DWM’s impact thesis.  Access to affordable financial services, to populations which are underserved, such as women, and those in rural areas, offers a multiplier affect to drivers of economic development. 

It helps communities make the most of opportunities that present themselves, as well as rebounding from economic and environmental challenges. 

DWM’s report cites statistics such as its ‘investment weighted impact’. This is its impact accounting for the ratio of investment size to enterprise value; in 2021 it saw 1,835 clients using responsible financial services, per portfolio company at the median, compared to the GIIN benchmark of 1,724 clients.

“As investors increasingly value transparency on impact performance, we are proud to help lead the industry by benchmarking our results,” said Hannah Schiff, DWM’s Director of Impact. 

“DWM strives to rigorously measure and manage its own impact, and then frame that impact with data that helps investors understand how our outcomes compare to others’ in driving progress on our biggest global challenges.”

Supporting renewables, and reducing carbon emissions, is central to DWMs work, but it’s also closely related to the financial inclusion.  This core principle led DWM to become a signatory to the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative and to develop tools to help investees improve their climate impact. Across DWM’s portfolio:

  • 38% of portfolio companies offer green finance products aimed at mitigating the effects of climate change
  • 58% have a firm-wide environmental policy
  • 54% have an environmental policy for borrowers

You can read the full report here.

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