One the one hand, an investment fund, Garrigue which funds social companies being created since 1985; on the other an association of solidarity, Tech-Dev, established in 1994, that supports the development of SMEs in Africa. In 2005, Garrigue and Tech-Dev have decided to work together to combine their activities. A partnership, that gave birth to Africa Fund.
Africa Fund, French solidarity savings for African SMEs
7. Community involvement
- To meet the financing needs of these African structures too large for microfinance institutions, and not safe enough for banks.
- To enter capital of ethical small businesses on the continent.
The Africa fund enters for a minority in the capital of African enterprises in development through solidarity savings collected in France. Since 1985, investors wishing to make sense of their savings can entrust the investment fund Garrigue and choose the sector they would like to support. In 2005, a fifth option was added to the four existing ones (energy and environment, products and natural food stores, fair trade, integration and local development); investors can now check “ Small businesses in Africa, an investment labialised Finansol.
If Garrigue handles the collection of solidarity savings in France, it’s the Tech-Dev association which supports the identification of project sponsors on the ground. They are selected on different criteria: the company must be of public benefit (job creation and ethical governance), developing local natural resources and selling its products primarily on its own markets, not only for export. “The challenge is to support African companies so they can sell quality African products on the African market,” summarizes Hubert de Beaumont, President of Tech-Dev. These criteria met, Garrigue makes an investment between 15,000 and 30,000 Euros for a minimum period of five years. It takes two forms: a capital which represents about 20% of the investment, without exceeding 25% of the company’s capital, a supply of current-account to be repaid within two or three years, with a declining rate of 7.5% (2% go to Garrigue, 2% go to Tech-Dev, and 3.5% are reinvested into the fund).
CONTRIBUTION TO COMPANY PERFORMANCE
- Africa Fund represents 10% of the Garrigue Fund
- Four years after its launch, it has helped nine companies to be supported financially for a total amount of 230, 000 Euros