How We Work

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Our investments focus on themes that address an open society challenge or opportunity. We deploy debt and equity capital, in both direct and indirect investments, with an average of $3-10 million per investment. We possess significant flexibility to make larger investments and to design creative financing instruments to meet the needs of our investees.
Two young women setting up a professional camera on a tripod
Newsroom staff prepare for a video broadcast at the Rappler office in Manila, Philippines. SEDF invests in companies and funds that work with independent media companies like Rappler that provide news and information and foster debate. © Jes Aznar/NYTimes/Redux

What We Offer

Investment Capital

We invest directly in companies through debt and equity, and indirectly through funds. Our investments range from seeding early-stage enterprises, to financing the scale-up of businesses with proven potential, to sustaining enterprises that need our support to continue delivering social value. We have significant flexibility in the scale and duration of the investments we can make.

Technical Assistance

In select instances, we can provide technical assistance grants to accompany or precede investment. These grants can include funding for market research, skills training and coaching before or after an investment is made, as well as support for product development and early incubator stage activity that will create the conditions for investment.

A Voice for Change

In pursuit of impact, we can link investees to broader Open Society advocacy strategies by engaging civil society and government.

What We Look For

Catalytic Change

We invest in enterprises that are developing new and better ways to deliver goods and services to marginalized communities, or which are exploring new ways to challenge dominant models of how companies or markets relate to owners, workers, customers, and the broader community. We support innovators taking high risks and seeking to accomplish bold goals.

Business Sustainability

Our goal is impact, rather than any particular financial return on our investment. Nevertheless, in our analysis of each investment, we carefully assess the financial and operational sustainability of the enterprise alongside the impact goals.

Adding Value

We want to invest when our investment can truly add value beyond just our capital. We ask the question: Why us? To what extent will SEDF’s investment be catalytic in enabling this enterprise to achieve the anticipated impact, beyond what is already possible with its existing capital or capital from other investors?

Principles and Policies

Data Use Notice (92.95 KB PDF FILE)

This document outlines how we responsibly collect, use, and protect information throughout the investment process.