GBF Selected as Pioneer Fund for New Rating System

Date of event or news:
04/26/2010

GBF Selected as Pioneer Fund for New Rating System

In April 2010, the B Corporation selected the Grassroots Business Fund (GBF) as one of a select few funds with which to test its new rating system, the Global Impact Investing Rating System (GIIRS).

GIIRS will pilot its new emerging markets rating system with GBF’s portfolio companies by running them through this new rating system. The goal is to provide social enterprises and fund managers with a similar rating to that of a Moody’s/MorningStar ranking of an organization. The rating system will facilitate a scaled-up marketplace for institutional investors, financial service organizations, and companies seeking mission-aligned growth capital in the international small and growing business sector.

The GIIRS rating will evaluate each social enterprise on a scale of one to five stars based on its performance. The rating system will measure the performance of an organization and determine its health on five dimensions: leadership, employees, products and services, community, and environment.

GBF will be highlighting two of its portfolio companies through the initial GIIRS rating. Juhudi Kilimo, LLC, an organization in Kenya which provides asset financing to smallholder farmers, and Latco International, a Bolivian organic sesame seed producer and exporter, will be among the first companies that will receive a rating.

GBF is a committee member of the B Corporation Emerging Markets Standards Advisory Council for GIIRS. Along with several other organizations, GBF will be developing the emerging markets rating system which GIIRS organizations will be evaluated.

GBF believes that GIIRS will complement its existing Impact Planning, Assessment and Learning (iPAL) framework program, which evaluates enterprises through basic metrics on activities and outputs, social return on investment, progress out of poverty surveys, and client feedback surveys.

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