BRICS Development Bank Impact Investment Fund Project 2013 #BRICSimpactfund

This new project is at the invitation of the South African delegation to the next BRICS Academic Symposium in South Africa, March 2013. Graham Sinclair of SinCo was approached for his expert perspective in sustainable investment in global emerging markets, specifically around impact investing in Africa (on account of work in 2012 with Martyn Davies Ph.D and Hannah Edinger Ph.D of Frontier Advisory ( for the Rockefeller Foundation and GIIN). Within the topic of - "BRICS Development Bank and Impact Investment Fund" - we are preparing a paper that connects DFIs in Africa, impact investing's opportunities, and the new global role of BRICS and their financing institutions.

The paper will focus on the positive potentia
l impacts of DFIs using not just state funding but investing with investment vehicles appealing to institutional investors, the philosophy, frameworks and models of impact investing, especially those applied in Africa, and consider the context of a BRICS currency-neutral funding mechanism to offer relative currency stability and innoculate against global currency impacts on local development funding and financing. The paper will expand on previous work in impact investing by GIIN, IRIS, GIIRS and practitioners such as Jed Emerson ( and Roger Frank (ttp://, and papers such as A new tool for scaling impact: How social impact bonds can mobilize private capital to advance social good (Social Finance, 2011). The recent coverage of the pros and cons of impact investing in Stanford Social Innovation Review is timely (see Other reference works include Impact investing in West Africa (Dalberg, 2011) and Promoting the Concept of Impact Investing in the Social and Environmental Space for Chinese Investors in Africa (GIBS, Frontier Advisory, Rockefeller Foundation, GIIN, 2012) to which SinCo contributed in 2010 - 2011, as well as SinCo's own Sustainable Investment in Sub-Saharan Africa Report (IFC+SinCo, 2011).

Building on previous BRICS symposia including China (2011) and India (2012), a related question for Africa (and South Afrcia) is 'so what' in terms of the region and what development financing institutions like Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA) would want to do on the African continent. The BRICS banking mechanism is a broad enough umbrella to contemplate any number of instruments: a development bank, cooperation fund, impact investment fund, special purpose vehicle(s), whatever. What would be the BRICS comparative advantage/value added for South Africa and Africa? And would other BRICS countries cooperate with SA in Africa in terms of such instruments? Given the current complement of DFIs and development institutions active in Africa, including the China Africa Development Fund (CADFund) with offices in Johannesburg, what would a BRICS development bank bring to the mix for the benefit of SA, Southern Africa and the rest of the continent in terms of non-dollar or non-Euro dominated development funds, investments, etc.? Or should the currency dimension of such instruments within the BRICS banking mechanism be decoupled from the actual content of what they aim to do? After all, there already exist the IBSA development fund under UNDP that funds projects in Asia, the Middle East and Latin America as well as Africa where the local currency issue is apparently not an issue.

The (maximum) 3,000 word paper will be an original and additional writing of thought leadership that helps inform the BRICS Summit in late March in South Africa, 2013, and builds upon previous MoU and Framework agreements by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa in previous years.

Project Presentations

  • 4th BRICS Academic Symposium, New Delhi, India, 2 - 8 March 2012

Project Meetings
  • South African participation in the 4th BRICS academic forum, Wednesday 8 February 2012 from 14:00 to 15:00 in the PRAU Boardroom, DIRCO, OR Tambo Building.

  • Institute for Global Dialogue
  • Institute for Security Studies
  • Environmental Advisor
  • Institute for Futures Research
  • Discovery
  • HSRC
  • SinCo
  • South African Institute of International Affairs
  • South African Department of International Relations and Cooperation
  • South African Department of Trade and Industry
  • South African Institute of International Affairs
  • South African Department of International Relations and Cooperation

  • Mr    Francis    Kornegay
  • Dr    Cheryl    Hendricks
  • Dr    Anthony    Turton
  • Prof    Andre    Roux
  • Dr    Ayanda    Ntsaluba
  • Dr    Narnia    Bohler-Muller
  • Mr    Graham    Sinclair
  • Ms    Elizabeth    Sidiropoulos
  • Mr    Fadl    Nacerodien
  • Dr    Brendan    Vickers
  • Memory    Dube    
  • Mr    Lyle    Davidson


Related media articles in the knowledgebase and/or covering the project and our report
Check back regularly for new media added.


Check back regularly for new media added.


SinCo will adopt a secondary research methodology, supplemented by primary research with selected experts in impact investing, BRICS, sovereign wealth funds, currency trading and development banking in the limited time available to prepare the paper. Following the meetings, SinCo may revise, update and publish aspects of the work.

As a general rule, SinCo endorses and uses the ethical research protocols of UNISA (below).

UNISA Research Ethics Policy.pdf UNISA Research Ethics Policy.pdf
Size : 338.12 Kb
Type : pdf



  • Brian Trelstad, Chief Investment Officer, Acumen Fund
  • Impact Investing: Socially responsible investing that produces triple bottom line results
  • Impact Investing Creates Template for Responsible Capitalism, - February 15, 8:43 PM
  • A new tool for scaling impact: How social impact bonds can mobilize private capital to advance social good (Social Finance, 2011)
  • Impact investing in West Africa (Dalberg, 2011)
  • Promoting the Concept of Impact Investing in the Social and Environmental Space for Chinese Investors in Africa (GIBS, Frontier Advisory, Rockefeller Foundation, GIIN, 2012)
  • Sustainable Investment in Sub-Saharan Africa Report (IFC+SinCo, 2011)
  • Social Performance Management – Measuring The Impact Of International Development W/ Steve Wright  Impact Investing, Interviews, Social Enterprise — By Luke Miller Callahan On 01/11/2012 23:07 Leader In Sustainable Development: Steve Wright Http://Groaction.Com/Discover/3735/Measuring-Impact-Steve-Wright-Grameen-Social-Performance/
  • The Role of State-Owned Financial Institutions: Policy and Practice Session 3: Role of State-Owned Financial Institutions, Lewis Musasike, 6th Annual Financial Markets and Development Conference, Washington, DC, April 26-27, 2004
  • It’s time for a ‘BRICS Fund’ by Samir Saran & Vivan Sharan, specially for RIR Opinion, December 14, 2011
  • Downs, E, 2011. Panel on New Interest Groups in Chinese Foreign Policy. United States-
    China Economic and Security Review Commission, 13 April.
  • Gumede, W, 2011. Effective state capacity for a democratic developmental state.
    Report for the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) Development Report.
  • Heath, J & Norman, W, 2004. Stakeholder theory, corporate governance and public
    management: What can the history of state-run enterprises teach us in the
    post-Enron era? Journal of Business Ethics, 53:247–65.
  • National Treasury, 2008. Review of South Africa’s development finance institutions (DFIs), Pretoria: Government Printer.
  • NewNet (New Energy World Network), 2011. Brazilian Development Bank fronts R$790m
    financing for country’s wind park, 7 March.
  • UN (United Nations), 2005. Rethinking the role of national development banks. New York:
    Financing for Development Office, United Nations Department of Economic and Social
    Affairs (UN-DESA).
  • Te Velde, DW & Warner, M, 2007. The use of subsidies by development finance institutions in the infrastructure sector. Working Paper 283. London: Overseas Development Institute.
  • World Bank, 2010. Transforming Mexico’s development financial institutions, IBRD Results, March 2010. Washington, DC: World Bank.
  • The Role of State-Owned Financial Institutions: Policy and Practice Session 3: Role of State-Owned Financial Institutions, Lewis Musasike, 6th Annual Financial Markets and Development Conference, Washington, DC, April 26-27, 2004
  • The Growing Role of the Development Finance Institutions in International Development Policy, Association of European Development Finance Institutions (EDFI) / Dalberg Global Advisors,  22 October 2009
  • Pioneer role of DFIs in sub-Saharan Africa, Yvonne Bakkum Director Private Equity, FMO, and Jeroen Horsten, Evaluation Officer, FMO,3746,en_2649_34889_2397532_1_1_1_1,00.html
  • OECD-GRI partnership to help multinational companies operate responsibly; 2011 Update of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises 15.00 CET, 13/12/2010
  • Emerging public and sovereign fund investors in Africa’s infrastructure: Challenges and Perspectives, OECD Development Centre for the Expert Roundtable on 11 December 2008,
  • Rethinking the role of National Development Banks Third Regional Consultation on "Rethinking the Role of National Development Banks in Africa" Draft Report 1, Johannesburg, South Africa, 22-23 November 2006; Financing for Development Office for comments by participants and is not intended for quotation. Comments should be sent to Julien Serre at <>
  • Development Planning Division Working Paper Series No. 29 The role of South Africa’s state-owned development finance institutions in building a democratic developmental state, William Gumede, Melissa Govender and Kamo Motshidi 2011
  • The Role of Development Finance Institutions: Lessons from Southern Africa of Best Practices for Their Effective Management by Barry M Jackson, DBSA, With Acknowledgements to Lewis Musasike & Ted Stillwell, 30 September 2004
  • Impact Investing in Emerging Markets, EditorsLucy Carmody, Benjamin McCarron, Jenny Blinch, Allison Prevatt, Author Marco Arosio, May 2011
  • China's Private Sector Investment and the Investment Climate in Africa. Researchers from IDS and the China-Africa Business Council (CABC) and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) have had direct access to private Chinese companies working in Africa, including 100 in-depth interviews with Chinese firms and business associations and officials in both China and Africa.
  • Storm over pension fund investments: South Africa seems poised to follow the example of other emerging economies by dipping into civil servant pension funds to finance national infrastructure projects. by Tom Nevin for Business / African Business / August-Sept, 2010
  • Africa Funds list of OPIC's current funds in Africa
  • The state of philanthropy: A conversation with Acumen Fund’s CEO Jacqueline Novogratz discusses the challenges that divide and unite today’s philanthropic community, McKinsey Quarterly, MARCH 2009
  • Africa: Demographics and the Investment Case for Africa, Novare, 17 February 2012
  • BRICS stock exchanges form alliance, by Tom Minney  October 15th, 2011
  • The role of Development Finance Institutions: Lessons from southern Africa of best practices for their effective management, Lewis Musasike, Ted Stilwell, Moraka Makhura, Barry Jackson & Marie Kirsten, Development Bank of Southern Africa, April 2004 



Follow us on



"Graham was instrumental in the planning, kick-off and growth stages of [FIRM] multi-phased strategy of factoring ESG analysis into the investment decision process. His deep knowledge of sustainability issues, business strategy, risk assessment, and stakeholder engagement helped to form the basis for a highly successful integration of robust environmental, social and governance analysis." -  Sustainable Investment Project Manager, New York, USA.

"Graham quickly mastered our internal needs and requirements, understood our culture, and made broad contributions in equities, fixed income, real estate and alternatives. He was generous in sharing his ideas and stepping up when we needed his expertise, which was transferable across sectors and asset classes."  -  VP Sustainability, trillion-dollar institutional investor, New York, USA.

"Graham brings energy, ideas and networks for solutions to complex challenges linking good business practice with good development practice. He is an exceptional facilitator of expert panels and groups of diverse stakeholders."  -  Manager, international financing facility,international organization, Geneva.

"Graham was extremely helpful in helping get up the curve on our sustainability initiative. Graham was very knowledgeable and insightful and allowed us to quickly get up the curve on Sustainability."  -  Chief Administrative Officer, Global Real Estate, trillion-dollar New York headquartered global institutional investor.

"[SinCo] brings a balanced and realistic perspective to sustainable investment and the claims related to performance. As a sustainable investment architect, [Graham] provides tangible and practical points of view on the subject without sacrificing the intellectual rigour that is needed to better understand the challenges facing the sector. Furthermore, Graham's enthusiastic and entertaining style makes the challenging subject of finance one worth listening to."  -  Associate, global social responsibility consultants, France

“Graham brings energy, ideas and networks for solutions to complex challenges linking good business practice with good development practice. he is an exceptional facilitator of expert panels and groups of diverse stakeholders.”  -  Fund manager, international organization, Geneva, Switzerland.

“Graham has one of the most fantastic international networks that I've ever encountered. His understanding of, and passion for, responsible investment makes him one of the most knowledgeable in the field. I've always been impressed with his delivery and focus.”  -  Sustainability officer, leading premium retailer, Cape Town, South Africa.

“I have known Graham personally for over 20 years. Graham is one of the most motivated and focused people I know. Graham is committed and trusted in his work and in his relationships. He invests passionate effort in everything he does to attain the best”  -  global human resources officer, global investment bank, London, UK.

“Graham launched the Boston Professional chapter of Net Impact and his leadership was instrumental in the chapter being awarded the "Rookie Chapter of the Year" award. Graham steps up, takes the lead, and always goes beyond what's required. I'm pleased to endorse him - highly recommended.”  - Professional Net Impact member, Boston, USA.

Home  |  Our Approach  |  Portfolio of work  |  What we do  |  How we do it  |  About us  |  Library  |  Lectures & Conferences  |  Contact Us

Recommendations  |  Frequently Asked Questions FAQs  |  Subscribe to our Newsletter  |  Terms of Use  |  Privacy Statement

Copyright SinCo 2006 - 2012.  All Rights Reserved.