The Growth Stage Impact Ventures Virtual Pitching Roundup

On June 3rd, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) hosted the virtual pitching event of the Growth Stage Impact Ventures (GSIV) for Sustainable Development Goals, which’s objective is to showcase impact ventures in emerging countries with a catalytic potential that can drive both large impact and yield.

The GSIV selection process organized by UNDP, EPFL Tech4Impact, Orange, and SAP selected 12 Finalists across the three categories: Affordable and Clean Energy, Access to Quality Health Care, and Reducing and Recovering Waste.

The 12 finalists were able to present in a virtual pitching format their products and services. All ventures and entrepreneurs at the event come from emerging markets and have developed at-scale products and services that contribute to solving some of our time’s main economic, social, and environmental challenges while achieving commercial success. The event was structured around the three pitching sessions of the impact ventures with read-outs from live commentators in between.

The 12 Finalists:

The event was kicked off by Maria Luisa Silva, the Director of UNDP Geneva that introduced the pitching session on Reducing and Recovering Waste and introduced the Entrepreneurs. After the session, Lachlan Cameron (Director Energy & Resource Efficiency Finance at Finance In Motion) and Melati Wijsen (Founder of Bye Bye Plastic Bags & Youthtopia) commented on the pitches and pointed out that we need to harvest the power of finance for people and the planet.

Right now, it is a time that requires action, change, leadership, and communication, and we need to be reminded how big and urgent the problem of waste is. They also commented on the tangible and scalable solutions that interconnected SDGs and, in their operations, included women and the youth.

Eva Bortolotti (Jr. Finance Sector Specialist) introduced the second session, Access to Quality Health Care that was afterward commented on by Anita Kover (Program Director, Social Finance at UBS Optimus Foundation) and Dr. Chioma Nwakanma (Medical Doctor & Founder at Smile with Me Foundation).

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They pointed out that the ventures are potential gamechanger and cover essential topics that have not been at the forefront before. They especially appreciated their inclusive business models that include people that are considered the bottom of the period.

The last session, Affordable and Clean Energy, was guided by Luisa Bernal (Policy Specialist at Finance Sector hub) and commented by Mateo Salomon (Global Energy & Finance Advisor at UNDP Energy) and Krisztina Tora (Chief Market Development Officer at The Global Steering Group for Impact Investment).

They highlighted that the solutions presented are essential to enable other advances and development and maximize impact by focusing on gender and equality.

The event was concluded by Luisa Bernal that stated that these ventures show that doing good while doing well is possible and that the finalists will pitch again and interact with experts at the Summit in December.

You might watch again the event from the link below

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own, not those of 


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