Collaborating for Social Impact
The Constellations Awards celebrate the remarkable ways in which social investors across Asia collaborate to address the complex challenges of our times.
Asia is big, diverse, and complex – and so are its challenges. Our members meet those challenges by collaborating to pioneer solutions at scale.
The Covid-19 pandemic has shown us the cracks in economies and the social sector but the social investment sector has responded unflinchingly to the unfolding crisis in the short term, and is nurturing systemic solutions for the long run. Our members have established shared aims and harnessed the strengths of different stakeholders to meet the moment with imaginative action. The Constellations Awards 2021 celebrate the ingenuity and effectiveness of our members.
The projects we recognise in the Constellations Awards are inspiring, but more importantly, they are action-oriented. We seek to illuminate the ripples of positive impact they have triggered, share their game-changing point of view, and provide these projects new means of accessing capital.
5 collaborative solutions
In 2021, we are proud to recognise 5 outstanding collaborative solutions that are addressing complex problems of our times.
The 2030 Water Resources Group estimates that if India continues to consume water as per current rates, India will only have half the water it needs by 2030. Agriculture accounts for 80% of India’s freshwater use, almost twice the amount used by comparable countries to grow one unit of food. Hence, innovative and scalable solutions are needed to solve a spectrum of water-related problems.
Villgro Innovations Foundation partnered with Hindustan Unilever Foundation (HUF) to identify and support social enterprises that can work with non-profit organisations to address India’s water challenges. Through an incubation program, high impact ideas with significant potential to address India’s rural water crisis are selected and provided with support. The partnership also facilitated engagements between social enterprises and NGOs to scale innovative solutions, operationalise pilots, and disseminate and promote successful models across the agriculture, water, and climate ecosystems to garner visibility, adoption, capital infusion, and scale-up.
Hindustan Unilever Foundation; CultYvate; CIPT; Villgro
More commendable entries
Credit Suisse, together with fellow AVPN member Village Capital formed a partnership aimed at strengthening Social Enterprise (SE) development and removing obstacles to the flow of capital from funders into SEs. Tapping on the AVPN network of funders and resource providers, they both harnessed their partnerships to provide expertise required to address SEs’ competency gaps. In addressing the non-financial capital requirements, they identified a key set of needs that represented barriers towards investment readiness. The pilot program focused on four modules of support for SEs, and following testing and workshops, AVPN created an online wizard, SE Development Toolkit to help SEs with profiling themselves to their stage of development, helping them identify their needs and then matching them to a set of resources available.
Social Enterprise Development Toolkit
LED BY: CREDIT SUISSE & VILLAGE CAPITAL
Founded in 2013, Khmer Water Supply Holdings (KWSH) is a social enterprise on a mission to increase safe water access by delivering piped water to remote areas in Cambodia where four million people still do not have reliable sources of clean water in their homes. KWSH needed a new CRM/ERP system, but off-the-shelf solutions weren’t suitable and the company didn’t have the capital necessary to hire a vendor for a custom build. Committed to providing hands-on strategic support, Insitor Partners, a shareholder in KWSH since its establishment, recognized the challenge and introduced KWSH to Swisscontact’s RISE Platform, whose technical assistance (TA) financing solutions were well suited to help KWSH overcome their scaling challenges.
Scaling Social Business in Southeast Asia
LED BY: SWISSCONTACT CAMBODIA & INSITOR PARTNERS
Globally, the funds required to achieve the SDGs fall well short of the total global aid budget, with an estimated funding gap of USD2.5 trillion. Frontier Brokers is part of the Scaling Frontier Innovation program, an initiative of the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s innovationXchange, which supports enterprises to scale their development impact in the Asia-Pacific. The Network is advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through innovation led by social entrepreneurship and investment for impact. Frontier Brokers is a network of 7 impact investment firms implementing projects to stimulate more appropriate types of capital reaching social enterprises. The firms range from NGOs to investment management firms and its members include firms like Athena Global Alliance, Brightlight Impact Advisory, Good Return, Investing for Good Impact Investment Exchange (IIX), Palladium and Secondmuse.
LED BY: GOOD RETURN & IMPACT INVESTMENT EXCHANGE
CASVI, collaborating with 86 financial institutions, listed companies, academia and policy research institutions,initiated “Discovering Social Value 99 in China” in 2016 to address the challenge in not having a common language to promote sustainable finance across sectors and markets. The project has successfully established a quantitative assessment system to evaluate listed companies’ contribution to sustainable development in terms of their economic, social and environmental performance. Building on the assessment model and results, CASVI, together with pro bono experts, developed a series of products – social value credit rating, ranking, indices and assessment reports.
Discovering Social Value 99
LED BY: CHINA ALLIANCE OF SOCIAL VALUE INVESTMENT(CASVI) & CHINA GLOBAL PHILANTHROPY INSTITUTE