The Japan ASEAN Women Empowerment Fund (JAWEF) has been awarded the LuxFLAG Microfinance label, as the first fund of its kind focused on “empowering women in South East Asia frontier and emerging markets”.
The fund aims to advance the role and position of women in the region with a focus on poverty reduction, job creation and entrepreneurship, and as such invests in “female micro-entrepreneurs”.
Launched as a $120m Sicav-Sif, the fund is managed by BlueOrchard, which specialises in impact investing, and has total assets of some €40m, according to LuxFLAG data.
BlueOrchard states that with exclusion of women from the workforce still a reality, the fund’s focus on empowering women economically can lead to significant benefits, including: stronger economies, better achievement of internationally set goals for development and sustainability, and improvements in quality of life for families, communities and societies at large.
The fund was initiated in 2016 by the Japan International Cooperation Agency, Japan Bank for International Cooperation, Sumito Life and other Japanese institutional investors.