Episode 3

#3 The Market Solution

In late 2018, UNCDF embarked on an unprecedented journey--the creation of the first ever UN-exchange traded fund (ETF). The non-profit ETF sponsor, Impact Shares, launched the Sustainable Development Goals Global Equity ETF (NYSE Arca: SDGA) in collaboration with UNCDF. The ETF would enable investments that support the achievement of the SDGs, while reflecting the importance of the LDC markets and UNCDF's efforts to increase transformative private sector investments to ensure that we leave no one behind.

In the two years between the launch of the ETF and now, what have we learned about leveraging private capital to advance SDG achievement, notably in last mile markets? And what are the lessons that institutional and impact investors can use to make their capital more impactful, particularly in the age of Covid? The CEO of Impact Shares, Ethan Powell, joins Capital Musings to share his views and answers.

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Capital Musings
Capital Musings is the Podcast show of the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF)

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United Nations Capital Development Fund

The UN Capital Development Fund makes public and private finance work for the poor in the world’s 45 least developed countries (LDCs).

UNCDF offers “last mile” finance models that unlock public and private resources, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development.

UNCDF pursues innovative financing solutions through: (1) financial inclusion, which expands the opportunities for individuals, households, and small and medium-sized enterprises to participate in the local economy, while also providing differentiated products for women and men so they can climb out of poverty and manage their financial lives; (2) local development finance, which shows how fiscal decentralization, innovative municipal finance, and structured project finance can drive public and private funding that underpins local economic expansion, women’s economic empowerment, climate adaptation, and sustainable development; and (3) a least developed countries investment platform that deploys a tailored set of financial instruments to a growing pipeline of impactful projects in the “missing middle.’’