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Mapping Financial Instruments in Europe

The missions and the virtual meetings in Europe are part of the activity stream under the Green Impact Investing Network (GIIN) of the SwitchMed. The core objective of this activity is to assess the interest of financing institutions located in Europe regarding investments in eco-innovative businesses or initiatives of green entrepreneurs in the SwitchMed target countries.

For these operations, we are collaborating with the European Federation of Ethical and Alternative Banks (FEBEA), which is one of the International Investment Networks that has a strategic interest in promoting ethical finance. Until 2018, towards the vision of establishing a SwitchMed Green Impact Investing Network, we are working to identify and attract international investment networks as well as the international and national financing institutions in the MENA region.



European Entities Involved



1. Banca Etica




2. Alterfin


3. COOPMed




4. Credit Cooperatif




6. AFD




7. Le Comptoir de l’Innovation




9. ResponsAbility



10. Etimos Foundation



11. Anima Invest Network


12. Avitem


13. CMI



14. Launch of CoopMed






16. Banca Intesa San Paolo



Banca Etica  is a cooperative bank that operates in Italy, in accordance with its mission to foster cooperation and solidarity.

Alterfin raises capital in Belgium and invests it in microfinance institutions and fair trade farmers and producers associations. It is a financial cooperative with 5,000 shareholders. While Alterfin’s presence is mainly in Latin America, investments in Africa are more and more gaining importance.

¨Finance is not reaching small and medium sized enterprises in an effective way, and causes differ from county to country¨. 
Hugo Couderé, senior advisor of the Alterfin 

CoopMed is an innovative financial tool operating in the Mediterranean Region through the financing of financial intermediaries such as microfinance institutions, banks, saving and credit unions, or any other legal form that provides financial services to entrepreneurs, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) that have limited or no access to the traditional banking system. CoopMed has been created by Credit Cooperatif and SEFEA, and is now financed by several members of FEBEA, as well as by the European Investment Bank. CoopMed is currently starting its operations in two target countries, Tunisia and Morocco. Read more here.

¨By directly linking investors to local financial intermediaries, it is easier to exchange technical knowledge between European and local financial actors, which in turn allows the spreading of good practices and procedures in the context of the financing of the social and green economy¨. 
Mr. Bruno Dunkel, member of CoopEst Executive Committee


Crédit Coopératif is a diversified French banking group, which offers a wide range of banking products and services, especially to businesses and organisations, in the different sectors in which it is involved.

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) runs two relevant projects that might have some synergies with the SwitchMed: the Green Climate Fund and the 10YFP. Created by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Green Climate Fund aims to support a paradigm shift in the global response to climate change. It allocates its resources to low-emission and climate-resilient projects and programmes in developing countries. The 10-year framework of programmes on sustainable consumption and production patterns (10YFP) is a global framework of action to enhance international cooperation to accelerate the shift towards sustainable consumption and production (SCP) in both developed and developing countries.

Agence Française de Développement (AFD) is the operator for France’s bilateral development finance mechanism. It is a public industrial and commercial institution with the status of specialized financial institution. AFD’s teams are based in Paris and Marseille and in a network of seventy agencies and representations in developing countries and the French overseas provinces. AFD Group comprises a private sector financing arm, Proparco, which has an important instrument deployed in Sub-Saharan Africa: the FISEA.

¨ FISEA, an investment fund that makes equity investments in businesses, banks, microfinance institutions and investment funds operating in this geographical area. With an investment target of €250m, the fund is indeed one of the key components of France’s initiative to promote growth and jobs in Africa. Such initiative, launched in 2009, could be therefore an interesting model to be replicated also in the MENA region¨.
Bernard Esnouf, Deputy executive director strategy, partnerships and communication


The Comptoir de l'Innovation (CDI) is a certified "social enterprise" created in June 2010 in Paris and its mission is to finance, support and promote social entrepreneurship in France and in the world. As for the activities out of France, CDI initiated the program Ambassadeurs Solidaires to export the French know-how of social economy. The goal of the program is to send CDI’s Ambassadeurs Solidaires all around the world to meet with the local actors of social economy, share expertise in social entrepreneurship with them and develop together new innovative solutions to meet the social challenges of our times (i.e. SEED EURO-MED programme and Impact, the first business incubator in Tunisia, in collaboration with AFD and Developpement Sans Frontieres.

The Fonds Européen de Financement Solidaire pour l’Afrique (“FEFISOL?) is a specialised rural microfinance Fund created in 2011 with the aim to provide medium-term financing to rural Microfinance Institutions (“MFIs?) and small producer businesses active in fair trade, organic products and food production.

¨ The Fund can invest up to 25% of its assets in North Africa, and at the moment 3 M€ are placed in this area, out of 18 M€ of total assets. The beneficiary countries in North Africa are at the moment only Morocco and Tunisia, where 5 and 1 MFIs respectively have been financed¨.
Anne-sophie  Bougouin, Fund manager

ResponsAbility Investments AG is one of the world’s leading asset managers in the field of development investments and offers professionally-managed investment solutions to both private and institutional investors. ResponsAbility invests in the MENA, especially in microfinance and fair trade and other interests are environmental projects. For example, they provided finance to SEKEM, an Egyptian organization committed to promoting sustainability and cooperation.

ETIMOS is a saving and credit Cooperative whose mission is to support its member organizations involved in development cooperation, international solidarity, ethical finance, microfinance as well as fair trade

¨ MENA region is a natural market and very interesting for European investors due to geographical proximity and the EU neighbourhood policy. There are opportunities for investment, as the MENA is experiencing growth and there are already European actors and infrastructures for transportation already in place¨ 
Davide Libralesso, Head of Programmes and International Relations at Etimos Foundation


At SwitchMed we also building synergies with Anima Invest Network (ANIMA), which brings together organisations willling to work for the economic development of the Mediterranean, the Agency for Sustainable Mediterranean Cities and Territories (AViTeM) , which help meet the challenge of urban and territorial development through democratic governance in the Mediterranean and the Center for Mediterranean Integration (CMI). 

Intesa Sanpaolo is among the largest European banking groups and the leader in Italy in all business areas. It is also active in Central Eastern Europe, Middle Eastern and North Africa, as well as the United States, Brazil, Russia, India and China. Intesa Sanpaolo Group’s commitment alongside the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, as Financial Services Global Partner is to help to redefine business strategies, provide financial support for investments addressing the re-design of the industrial System and to support the Circular Economy facing the objective of promoting sustainable economic development in the long run.

The European Venture Philanthropy Association is also one of SwitchMed' strategic partners. EVPA brings together a diverse community with a common interest in venture philanthropy and social investment

We will keep you posted with the upcoming activities in Europe.