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A tree nursery in Madagascar

CI Ventures, LLC

Investing in businesses that contribute to healthy ecosystems

© Christina Mittermeier

Providing sustainable economic opportunities must be at the core of successful conservation strategies.​

CI Ventures is an investment fund that provides loans to small- and medium-sized enterprises that operate in the forests, oceans and grasslands where Conservation International works​. Whether in sustainable agriculture or forestry, ecotourism or wild fisheries, these businesses share one thing in common — a commitment to practices that benefit ecosystems and human well-being at the same time.​

Our plan

Fill the financing gap

Many conservation-conscious enterprises describe challenges in raising risk-tolerant capital and securing technical and other resources needed to demonstrate performance and meet investor expectations. CI Ventures provides capital and other resources to enhance “investment readiness” and enable larger additional investment.

Focus on impact first

Designed to leverage scarce public and philanthropic resources, CI Ventures’ investments will emphasize projects that have the potential for greatest impact in critical landscapes and seascapes in Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Kenya, South Africa, Indonesia and the Philippines. CI Ventures uses proprietary impact screening and monitoring and evaluation tools that assess impact throughout the investment lifecycle.

 

LAKE LANGANO, ETHIOPIA. A young Ethiopian boy holds his fresh catch on the shores of Lake Langano, Ethiopia.
© Michael Hanson/Aurora Photos

Projected impact in 10 years

  • 100 deals
  • US$ 30 million responsibly invested in eligible sustainable enterprises
  • US$ 200 million additional co- and follow-on investment from partners
  • 500,000 hectares of land and sea sustainably managed
  • 60,000 livelihoods supported
  • 2,000+ jobs created

 

How CI Ventures Financing Works

CI Ventures’ capital supports enterprises that will generate profit, which helps to pay off the loans — returning principal and interest to the fund that can be used to make future investments. Over time, this revolving fund will grow and have additional capital to continuously reinvest in conservation efforts.

Typical investment: US$ 200,000-500,000
Typical investment duration: Up to 5 years

Types of Investments

CI Ventures invests in startup and growth-stage enterprises seeking financing to support:

  • Investment readiness: Targeted, relatively short-term interventions and investment to improve readiness to mobilize larger follow-on financing (e.g., improved financial control systems, export and/or market certification, third-party audit of impacts)
  • Growth capital: Investments in companies with mature business models that seek capital to expand or restructure operations or enter new markets (e.g, working capital lines, capital expenditures)
  • Novel approaches: Innovative technologies, proof-of-concept and market-based approaches that disrupt or replace existing unsustainable production models

Eligibility

To be eligible for financing from CI Ventures, enterprises must demonstrate:

  • A viable business model
  • Potential for significant, measurable environmental and social impacts (e.g., biodiversity conservation, restoration of natural resources, jobs created, etc.)
  • Potential to unlock future additional investment at scale
  • Strong management capacity
  • Alignment with Conservation International’s mission and values

Investees