Impact investing turns mainstream as COVID-19 drives up demand from all sides

(Clockwise from top left) Fernanda Lim, partner at London-based impact investment firm LeapFrog Investments; Tan Shao Ming, chief investment officer at ABC World Asia; Saima Rehman, investment officer, Private Equity & Funds at IFC; and Michelle Teo, Southeast Asia managing editor at DealStreetAsia.

Institutional investors are playing a crucial role in promoting impact investing as the COVID-19 pandemic drives up demand for such capital worldwide, especially across emerging economies in Asia, according to seasoned investors.

From financial inclusion to affordable healthcare, investors expect that the amount of money to be invested in businesses with a social or environmental impact to increase, at a time when the prolonged pandemic is taking a heavy toll on the population in the developing world.

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