Promote access to education, a top priority for I&P and its partners
Access to education is key to address the challenge of job creation in Sub-Saharan Africa, one of I&P’s primary impact objectives
. Over the course of its 15 years of investment, I&P has supported several initiatives in the field of education and training, including notably the Malian company Trainis
and the pan-African network Enko Education
. Comoé Capital, an Ivoirian fund sponsored by I&P, shares the same values and impact objectives.
Access to education and training remains indeed a critical challenge in Sub-Saharan Africa
. As recently recalled by the World Economic Forum, Sub-Saharan Africa is the lowest-ranked region in terms of human capital development. According to UNESCO (2012), 56 million sub-Saharan Africans aged 15 to 24 had not completed their primary school education and lacked professional skills. With a working age population projected to triple to 1.25 billion, the continent will need to create jobs at an extremely rapid pace to absorb this growing labor force.
The Jacobs Foundation has been working on improving the living conditions of all children and youth in Côte d'Ivoire through the Transforming Education in Cocoa Communities (TRECC) program. Through the work of TRECC, the Jacobs Foundation and its partners have noted that the education entrepreneur ecosystem in Côte d’Ivoire remains weak. The private sector has still limited interest in addressing the pervasive challenges of the education sector, especially in rural areas. “We are excited to launch the Education Impact Fund in Côte d’Ivoire, as one of our ambitions under the TRECC program is that the country emerges as a hub for education enterprises catalyzing the provision of affordable market-based solutions that improve the quality education in rural communities throughout West Africa,” says Fabio Segura, Director of International Programs for the Jacobs Foundation.
Investment Strategy: support 10 education-related SMEs in Côte d'Ivoire
The goal of the partnership will be to provide risk finance, support and bring subsidized technical assistance to 10 SMEs by 2021
, in order to grow innovative solutions to Ivorian education challenges. It includes both seed financing (small loans ranging from €10,000 to 60,000) and development financing (€60,000 to 200,000).
The investment strategy is fully in line with Comoé Capital’s objectives
: targeting Ivoirian small businesses presenting strong impact opportunities and added value and operating in the education sector (including professional training, publishing, bookshops, services to educational institutions, etc.) “Education is key to the future of any country, especially for developing countries. Through initiatives like the Education Impact Fund, Comoé Capital is fostering more inclusive and high-quality education
.” said Issa SIDIBE, CEO of Comoé Capital.