Gender equality, sustainable SME development and impact investment : DID shares its experience during the Social Finance Forum and SOCAP17

November 21, 2017

Why is gender empowerment good for economic development? "Beyond the fact that women represent an active force and generate a significant impact on the development of their local communities and countries, do I have to remind that women represent 50% of the population? I don’t think any business should ignore half of its target market!"

Those are the words of Marisol Quirion, Vice President for Investments and Management Contracts at DID, who was a panelist at the session on Impact investing in frontier markets during the tenth Social Finance Forum held in Toronto November 8-10. This conference on investments for social progress and on social enterprises is the largest gathering of social finance professionals in Canada and attracted more than 500 attendees and 95 speakers (investors, entrepreneurs and finance professionals). 

Jessie Greene, Director of Investments at DID, was also one of the speakers on the panel titled Where are all the impact investment products? The two DID representatives addressed a range of topics, including issues related to blended finance and the importance of increasing gender equality for supporting sustainable economic development. 

Earlier, on October 9-13, San Francisco was the site for SOCAP 17 - an international conference on Social Capital Markets as change agents for generating positive social and environmental impact. Marie-Claire Duguay, program manager at DID, spoke as a panelist at the session titled Supporting sustainable SME development in emerging markets

The event, celebrating its tenth anniversary, drew 3000 investors, social entrepreneurs, philanthropists, CEOs from large corporations and other innovators from the four corners of the world.