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Ethical KiwiSaver provider funds innovative social impact bond aimed at women

1 minute read

New Zealand’s leading ethical fund manager unveiled a ground-breaking investment in a high impact social bond aimed at improving the lives of 180,000 women in Asia-Pacific.

Pathfinder Asset Management, parent of CareSaver KiwiSaver Scheme, announced Monday a USD$1 million investment in the internationally acclaimed IIX Women’s Livelihood Bond 3 (WLB 3).

The investment will be spread across its three diversified CareSaver KiwiSaver funds and the Pathfinder Ethical Growth Fund, representing 2.5% of each fund.

The bond, 50% of which has been underwritten by the US Development Finance Corporation, will provide small scale loans to approximately 180,000 female borrowers workers, and suppliers in India, Cambodia and the Philippines.

Microfinance has proven highly effective at improving social and economic outcomes among impoverished communities while providing reliable returns for investors.

Paul Brownsey, Chief Investment Officer for Pathfinder, says the bond is a great fit for Pathfinder/CareSaver ethical investors.

“We are very pleased to be involved in this – it is a happy collision between low risk, good returns and social impact.”

With a projected return of around 4%, Brownsey said the bond suited the long-term investment nature of Pathfinder’s portfolios.

“Security is strong and the track record of the borrower is exceptional.”

Pathfinder last week was named 2020 Responsible Investment Fund Manager by Good Returns.  It also won the 2020 Sustainable Business Networks Social Impactor Award.

CareSaver KiwiSaver Scheme, which is 1.5 years old, is currently a top performer across all three of its funds.

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