Paris, France, June 9th. The Inter-American Development Bank and Danone announced today they are joining forces with Livelihoods Funds and the Danone Ecosystem Fund to develop disruptive business solutions that boost economic growth in the Latin America and Caribbean region. The four organizations have signed a memorandum of understanding with a 2020 horizon.
The three-year strategic partnership will promote sustainable, inclusive development initiatives in the region harnessing Danone’s value chain as well as with implementing partners, Livelihoods Funds and the Danone Ecosystem Fund, while also empowering local communities, and protecting the environment.
The scope of the partnership is broad and ambitious, with five key areas for cooperation:
- Fostering Sustainable Agriculture
- Supporting Inclusive Recycling
- Protecting watersheds
- Increasing clean water access
- Driving Co2 reduction
During the first phase of the global partnership, the IDB and Danone will look to strengthen and scale projects currently being implemented or designed by Livelihoods Funds and the Danone Ecosystem Fund in the Latin America and Caribbean region.
This partnership extends across the IDB Group to include the Multilateral Investment Fund and the Inter-American Investment Corporation, who have worked with Danone on past efforts such as the SCALA program and continue to explore new opportunities for collaboration.
“I’m so pleased we’re establishing this global strategic partnership with Danone to promote sustainable and inclusive development in Latin America and the Caribbean,” said IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno. “Our hope is that more French companies, including those in Danone’s value chain, will be inspired to get involved in development projects in any emerging or frontier markets where they operate.
”Danone CEO Emmanuel Faber said: “At Danone, we believe private and public sector collaboration is central to fostering sustainable development, reducing social inequalities, and protecting the environment. As a major global company operating in the Latin America region, we are committed to playing a part in its economic development. This partnership is another example of how we are bringing the Alimentation Revolution to life; co-creating innovative business models that not only benefit Danone but also protect the planet and support healthier eating and drinking practices.”
A global partnership built on joint projects in Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico
The partnership will build on the success of joint projects previously co-financed and implemented by the IDB, Danone and the Danone Ecosystem Fund.
These include the Kiteiras micro distribution project, which has provided training and professional empowerment for 2,000 underprivileged women in Brazil, as well as recycling projects that have improved working conditions for over 3,700 grassroots recyclers in Brazil, Mexico, and Argentina. These projects are set to expand, as the IDB, Danone and their partners have agreed to co-finance more than $6 million in grants.
Pascal de Petrini, President of Danone Ecosystem Fund said: “The Danone Ecosystem Fund is committed to finding concrete solutions that boost growth, empower communities and protect the environment. Working with IDB has already helped us expand our reach in Argentina and Brazil. This new global partnership will be a game-changer, enabling us to expand our presence and impact across the region.”
Bernard Giraud, President of Livelihoods Venture said: “As an investment fund supported by private companies, we believe that scale and impact are key for climate action and poverty reduction. We need more result-driven coalitions to develop efficient solutions over time in sustainable farming, watershed preservation and ecosystem restoration. This partnership with IDB is therefore a great opportunity to accelerate the development of large-scale projects delivering value for people, creating public goods and contributing to business sustainability at the same time.”
About the Inter-American Development Bank
The Inter-American Development Bank is a leading source of long-term financing for economic, social and institutional projects in Latin America and the Caribbean. Besides loans, grants and guarantees, the IDB conducts cutting-edge research to offer innovative and sustainable solutions to our region’s most pressing challenges. Founded in 1959 to help accelerate progress in its developing member countries, the IDB continues to work every day to improve lives.
Dedicated to bringing health through food to as many people as possible, Danone is a leading global food company built on four business lines: Essential Dairy & plant-based Products, Early Life Nutrition, Waters and Medical Nutrition. Through its mission and dual commitment to business success and social progress, the company aims to build a healthier future, thanks to better health, better lives and a better world, for all its stakeholders—its 100,000 employees, consumers, customers, suppliers, shareholders and all the communities with which it engages.
About the Danone Ecosystem Fund
The Danone Ecosystem Fund was created in 2009, with the goal of building a more inclusive economy by strengthening and empowering the most fragile stakeholders in the Danone ecosystem. This endowment fund of €100 Million co-creates innovative business solutions with local partners that generate social, environmental & economic value for small local actors and competitive advantage for Danone. Organized into five areas covering each part of Danone’s value chain (sourcing, local development, micro-distribution, caring services and recycling), the fund has supported 67 projects involving 46 subsidiaries and 56 non-profit organizations; generated €139 million in investment; created 4,650 jobs; and led to the professional empowerment of 40,912 people.
About the Livelihoods Funds
The Livelihoods investment funds have been created by private companies to generate social, environmental and economic impact while making their businesses more sustainable. The funds join forces with civil society, public institutions and experts to create value for all: improved livelihoods for rural communities; public goods (nature and water conservation, CO2 sequestration); sustainable sourcing and high-quality carbon offsets for businesses. The Livelihoods funds provide upfront financing to best-in-class project developers for the implementation and monitoring of large scale projects over up to 20 years. Returns to the funds are results-based to guarantee that projects are delivering tangible results. The Livelihoods Funds invest in projects in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
- Isabel Alvarez-Rodriguez