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OPIC commits to Indian impact fund

The US DFI has committed $20m to Caspian Impact Investment, an Indian multi-sector social impact debt provider that includes food & agri in its remit.

US development finance institutions, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), has committed $20 million to Caspian Impact Investment (CII), an Indian multi-sector social impact debt provider that provides debt to enterprises engaged in small business lending, microfinance, food & agriculture and affordable housing.

CII India plans to use the fund to diversify into other sectors including healthcare and livelihoods over the next 12 to 18 months, according to the press release. CII India is an impact investment fund that launched in 2013.

Since 2009, OPIC has made 49 investments in India with the most recent one made to Ujjivan Financial Services Private Limited, a microfinance institution that offers business loans to the urban poor, with a primary focus on women, and SKS Microfinance Private Limited, an institution of the same kind.

“The significance of Caspian’s work in India lies in their core focus on serving the underserved. When I visited India earlier this year, I saw firsthand the potential and dynamism of the business community, and I look forward to OPIC’s continued engagement there alongside compelling partners like Caspian,” said Elizabeth Littlefield, president and chief executive of OPIC, about the new investment. “Amid the excitement of a quickly-expanding economy, it is crucial to maintain growth that is inclusive of all people. The high-impact SMEs Caspian seeks to finance are exactly what’s needed to catalyze this type of balanced growth.”

CII India is managed by its investment advisor, Caspian Impact Investment Advisers.