IDB facilitates investments in shared value by Latin American and Caribbean companies

Inter-American Development Bank and Nestlé co-host creating Shared Value Global Forum 2013 in Cartagena

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has allocated $750,000 to support clients from its private-sector portfolio in implementing initiatives to create shared value.

A company creates shared value when it addresses economic and social problems in a community, not only making itself more competitive, but creating benefits for workers and their families.

The IDB is the first multilateral financial institution to endorse the concept of shared value assessments, and will select a group of ten companies that it is already supporting to identify investment opportunities aimed at optimizing the allocation of their resources, increasing their competiveness and adding social value in communities. Each project that is selected will receive an assessment designed to identify business opportunities and to draft investment plans during 2013-2014.

Companies will be chosen based on their capacity for making substantial shared value investments. Each will receive four months of specialized consulting services so as to be able to identify opportunities and assign priorities among alternative plans.

Work is already underway with Subsole in Chile, Caribe Hospitality in Jamaica and the Universidad de San Ignacio de Loyola in Peru.

With Subsole, an agricultural products firm, studies have aimed at enabling the company's workforce to become more sustainable, through investments to improve working conditions of low-income, rural families during the harvest season. In the case of Caribe Hospitality, a tourism development company, the focus has been on identifying job opportunities for at-risk youth during the construction of hotels, and for including small and medium-sized companies in the supply chain. With the Universidad de San Ignacio de Loyola, alternatives are being offered to broaden the socioeconomic spectrum of matriculating students and to lower dropout rates.

The remaining seven beneficiaries are currently being evaluated, with plans for still others to receive blueprints for identifying social issues arising in connection with the products and services they offer, and expanding the reach of their value chains.

While many firms in Latin America and the Caribbean value investments that not only provide financial returns but also bring with them social and environmental benefits, they lack the capacity, time and resources to identify shared value investments.

The shared value assessment, along with other related topics, will be discussed on October 28 in Cartagena, Colombia, at the Creating Shared Value Global Forum 2013, which aims to develop new thinking on means by which the private sector can help to stimulate development in Latin America and the Caribbean and the world. The event is organized by Nestlé and the IDB.

The entire Forum will be webcast live in English and Spanish.

Webcast viewers will also have the chance to ask questions of the panelists at or via Twitter @nestlecsv. Follow live tweets from the event: #CSVForum.