20 April 2021 | Press Release

Gender lens investing in practice – Driving value for investors in Vietnam

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, 7 April 2021 – Vietnam’s investor community joined an event sponsored by Investing in Women – an initiative of the Australian government to catalyse inclusive economic growth through women’s economic empowerment in South East Asia – to promote how gender inclusive investment strategies can help address the economic pressures facing Vietnam.

Despite effective measures against the spread of COVID-19, Vietnam’s economy has been disrupted and growth momentum challenged. In the face of these challenges, the private sector in Vietnam – specifically impact enterprises – continue to show strong resilience and are delivering critical services in the country.

The event, entitled “Gender Lens Investing in Practice – Driving Value for Investors in Vietnam,” was organized by AVPN, a pan-Asian network for social investors. Over 81 eminent investors and business leaders attended the event in-person, and 40 South East Asian leaders joined online.

Australian Chamber of Commerce (AusCham) and American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham), joined forces with AVPN to promote the event across their networks.

“When we think of building back better, we at the Australian Embassy are passionate about investing in women, which reflects not only a human right but also smart economics,” explained Consul General Julianne Cowley. “We encourage more investors to take advantage of this largely under-served market of women’s SMEs.”

International Finance Corporation’s presentation on moving gender balance in private equity and venture capital was followed by an engaging panel discussion. Four leading private equity and venture capital investors from Vietnam discussed how gender-inclusive approaches can drive value for investors and improve access to finance for women’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the country.

Panellists also discussed why and how they incorporate gender considerations into their investment processes, portfolios, and teams, and shared their investment highlights and actionable advice for Vietnam’s investment community.

“Investing in women-led businesses is not just a good thing to do, it’s good business. We are committed to diversity and inclusion both in our leadership and work with our member companies. The aim is to continue to promote women in workplaces and the broader community in Vietnam,” said Mary Tarnowka, Executive Director, AmCham Vietnam.

“Vietnam is a land of entrepreneurs and many women are leading the way in both the formal and informal sector; however, one challenge is access to investment. I am glad to see this event focus on gender-lens investing and hope it raises awareness of the opportunities that arise from integrating diversity and inclusion into the investment community,” said Simon Fraser, Executive Director, AusCham Vietnam, in his closing remarks.

Increasing investments in women’s SMEs will have a multiplier effect in the local economy, creating and sustaining more jobs. To promote this agenda, AVPN is planning to host a workshop on gender lens investing and a women’s SMEs showcase in May.

About AVPN

AVPN is a unique funders’ network based in Singapore committed to building a vibrant and high impact social investment community across Asia. We are an advocate, capacity builder, and platform that cuts across private, public and social sectors embracing all types of engagement to improve the effectiveness of members across the Asia Pacific region. The organization hosts an extensive events calendar, including the region’s largest annual gathering of social investors and ecosystem players, workshops, roundtables, webinars, and regular member meet-ups. AVPN also produces research reports that support ecosystem development; hosts a platform to match the financial and non-financial resources of investors with investee organizations; and carries out industry outreach through a newsletter that reaches over 9,000 subscribers, as well as other social media outlets.

For more information visit, www.avpn.asia.

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