Businesses and entrepreneurs in emerging markets have the power to drive economic and social impact. Together these small and medium enterprises (SMEs) generate between 70 and 95 percent of new employment opportunities. Often their major challenge is access to finance to grow their businesses and generate jobs at a faster pace. The funding gap for SMEs in emerging markets is estimated at €4.6 trillion.
Lendahand is moving this needle by empowering everyday investors to crowdfund affordable loans to these businesses so they can thrive, create jobs, and provide a decent living to those people who need it most. With the power of the crowd we have already mobilized over EUR 100 million, positively impacting the lives of many people across the globe.
Making an impact is our core business. Our aim is to be transparent about the impact you make as a Lendahand investor. Not only by showing the statistics but also telling the inspiring stories of our entrepreneurs behind the numbers. Understanding our impact also allows us to assess if we are still on the right track to achieving our impact ambitions. It’s not always as simple as it may seem. Download here our impact guide about how we measure and report impact.
More information on how our portfolio companies contribute to making an impact can be found on each project page’s “Impact” tab.
We contribute to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030.
At Lendahand, your investments contribute to the following SDGs, click on an icon for more information:
Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere
According to the United Nations, this first goal is also the most important goal. More than 700 million people, or 10% of the world’s population, still live in extreme poverty today, struggling to fulfill their most basic needs. All of our current investments have a positive impact on the lives of our entrepreneurs and their communities.
Goal 2: Zero hunger
The goal here is to end hunger, achieve food security, and improve nutrition. A profound change of the global food and agricultural system is needed if we want to nourish the more than 690 million people who are hungry today. Our agricultural portfolio companies help farmers achieve a more efficient and (sustainable) agri-business.
Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable world. Currently around 35% of Lendahand investments went to women-led or women-focused businesses. Our ambition is to get this percentage to 55% within the next five years.
Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy
Access to electricity in emerging markets has begun to accelerate. Energy efficiency continues to improve and innovative options for renewable energy are growing impressively. Lendahand’s portfolio offers reliable, clean energy solutions to individuals, families, farmers as well as commercial businesses all over Africa.
Goal 8: Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all
Sustained and inclusive economic growth can drive progress, create decent jobs for all and improve living standards. Since the start of our platform, Lendahand aims to create jobs and economic growth with all of our portfolio companies.
Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries
Inequality within and among countries is a persistent cause for concern. Ensuring no one is left behind is integral to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and Lendahand’s mission. That’s why our platform only offers investment opportunities in emerging markets, where they need it the most.
Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impact
2010-2019 was the warmest decade ever recorded. Climate change is affecting every continent and is disrupting national economies and lives. Lendahand’s clean energy portfolio companies offer different ways to reduce CO2 emissions, from solar energy to biogas digesters to clean cooking solutions.
Featured impact story
Q&A: Environmental Impact of Solar Home Systems
By Lynn Hamerlinck on 29 April 2022
How much CO2 emissions does a solar home system avoid? Does it depend on the light bulb you use? How can the reporting on this improve? Today, Max Steenbrink shares the findings from his research with us.