SIDI, Alterfin Announce First Close of FEFISOL II Fund at $23m to Support Rural Microfinance, Smallholder Farmers in Africa

Story Highlights
  • Alterfin, founded in 1994, aims to “enhance human dignity in the developing countries by promoting…sustainable development.” It does this by structuring investments that leverage funds from both individuals and institutions. As of December 2021, Alterfin managed total assets EUR 125 million (USD 133 million). As of 2022, the cooperative has 160 partners – mostly serving rural areas – in 35 countries.

rance-based investment firm Solidarité Internationale pour le Développement et l’Investissement (SIDI) and Belgium-based cooperative Alterfin recently announced a new investment vehicle, Fonds Européen de Financement Solidaire (FEFISOL) II, whose first close includes investments totaling EUR 22 million (USD 23 million). The goal of the new fund is to finance 110 institutions in rural parts of 28 African countries with the aim of increasing economic resilience and food security. The investees are to include microfinance institutions (MFIs) as well as entities that buy crops from smallholder farmers. These investees will have access to EUR 1 million (USD 1.05 million) in technical assistance from Proparco, a unit of the French government’s Agence Française de Développement that was founded as Société de Promotion et de Participation pour la Coopération Economique.

FEFISOL II succeeds the original FEFISOL fund, which closed in July 2021 having issued EUR 86.5 million (USD 91 million) in debt, equity and guarantees to 92 MFIs in 25 countries. Among the goals of the new fund, which is to issue its first disbursements in July 2022, is “to be even more ambitious in terms of social and environmental performance.”

The investors in FEFISOL II include Proparco, which committed EUR 5 million (USD 5.2 million) to the fund; the EU’s European Investment Bank, which committed EUR 5 million (USD 5.2 million); SIDI, which committed EUR 4.8 million (USD 5.0 million); and Alterfin, which committed EUR 2 million (USD 2.1 million). The other investors, which have made commitments of undisclosed size, are Alternative Bank Switzerland; Italy’s Banca Etica; BIO, which is also known as the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries; the French bank Crédit Coopératif; and the nonprofit SOS Faim Luxembourg.

SIDI was created in 1983 to harness market forces to advance economic inclusion. The firm started focusing its investments on MFIs starting in the 1990s. As of December 2020, SIDI held total assets of EUR 50 million (USD 53 million). As of 2022, it has debt, equity and guarantees deployed at 144 partners in 34 countries, seeking “human, social and environmental returns.”


Nichole Manhire

Is the media and brand manager at GFA News. She works very closely with editors and podcasters that contribute to telling the African business success story. For marketing and advertising send Nichole an email:

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