There is a new platform dedicated to supporting blended finance investments and building the market called Convergence. Convergence launched in January 2016 as the first and only platform that helps public and private investors find and connect with each other to co-invest in blended finance deals in emerging and frontier markets. It will enable more investment in these markets by leveraging public and philanthropic funding to unlock billions of private sector dollars for global development. By allowing investors to quickly search databases for credible deals or co-investors that match their investment needs, Convergence will broaden investors’ networks and simplify their screening process.
Convergence hopes to tackle these design challenges in multiple ways. First, it offers grant funding for practitioners to design innovative blended finance structures. This funding allows practitioners to invest time in coordinating public and private investors, modeling impact and financial returns, and creating structures that appeal to both public and private investors. At the end of each grant, Convergence will publish knowledge documents that outline why practitioners made specific design decisions and what they learned from their design process. These findings will create an important foundation for other practitioners to build on when considering similar blended finance structures.
Convergence’s databases of deals and investors allow investors to quickly filter and find deals and investment partners across sectors and regions. Their screening process ensures the credibility and quality of all deals and investors listed on the databases of deals and investors. All new users on the platform must have a referral from an existing user. In addition, deals showcased on the deal database must have an initial investment commitment. They also offer tools such as a database of past blended finance deals, knowledge resources, secure data rooms, and deal checklists to help lower transaction costs.
For the Convergence website: