WEMI-Logo

Women Empowerment Mentoring and Incubation (WE>MI) Fund Manager Programme

Funded and Supported by:

USAID-Logo

Programming conducted in partnership with:

MIDA-Advisors

Local programming partner:

SAVCA-logo-original2

About

WEMI-Image-2

SAVCA is pleased to serve as the local programming partner for the inaugural Women Empowerment Mentoring and Incubation (“WE>MI”) Fund Manager Programme funded by the United States Agency for International Development (“USAID”), alongside implementing partner MiDA Advisors.

WE>MI is a 13-month mentoring and incubation initiative that seeks to increase the number of investable women-owned and women-managed fund managers in Southern Africa by providing necessary technical assistance and investment facility support to mobilise local and international investments to participating funds.

WE>MI will support the successful development, growth, and long-term sustainability of women-owned and women-managed fund managers in the Southern African investments industry with the inaugural class of women.  These participants will receive skills development, mentorship support, and connections to resource partners and ultimately be prepared to connect with potential investors in the United States, Africa, and globally.

WE>MI’s success is based on strong partnerships with resource partners and fundraising sponsors that will prioritise gender inclusion and equity in the investments industry.

How You Can Get Involved?

MiDA and SAVCA are seeking strategic resource partners in, amongst other things, the legal, fund accounting and administration, and environmental, social, governance (ESG) fields to help us ensure best-in-class content delivery, support, and preferred discounted rates to programme participants. Strategic partners may elect to partner with WE>MI through the contribution of resources, sponsorships, investment, or working capital support. Partners who enlist their supportwill be recognised for their contribution in communications and programme collateral.

Service Provider

By Providing:

  • In-kind donations through content delivery or technical contribution
  • Serving as workshop/masterclass facilitators,

Sponsorship

Through financial sponsorship:

  • Supporting the overall cost of the programme
  • Supporting the delivery of a specific output into the programme and/or a participant or grouping of participants (e.g. template creation, sector research)

Investment

By:

  • Allocating funding to invest in a participating fund(s)
  • Leveraging your network to connect participant funds with prospective limited partners

Working Capital

By:

  • Providing access to working capital facilities for participating fund management firms

"It's important for women to champion other women." Hear from our supporting partner USAID's Project Development Specialist for Regional Economic Growth Tumi Mathabatha on the importance of empowered women empowering other women in the economy to promote economic growth through the WE>MI initiative.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

WE>MI, short for the Women Empowerment Mentoring and Incubation Fund Manager Programme, is a mentoring and incubation programme funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and is being implemented by MiDA Advisors and SAVCA. WE>MI is aimed at increasing the number of investable women-owned and women-managed fund managers in Southern Africa.

WE>MI is targeted at:

  • supporting women-owned and women-managed fund managers with an existing investment thesis;
  • who are in the process of raising a fund, or who are close to or have reached ‘First Close’ of their fund (i.e. reached its first threshold amount of funds required to commence investments and close deals), and that is aimed at benefitting the Southern African region; and
  • who could benefit from skills development assistance, investment support and investment readiness assistance.

WE>MI will provide participants with:

  • Technical assistance, including skills development in the form of workshops and masterclasses, one-on-one mentoring and facilitated access to resource partners; and
  • Investment support facilitation, focused on providing fund management firms with investment support and investment readiness assistance to increase the success rate for capital raising.

Participant graduates will have the opportunity to pitch their funds to key investment sources in the United States, Africa, and Europe.

  • The WE>MI programme is currently scheduled to kick off in June 2021, and end by July 2022 (i.e. run for a 13-month period) – view the draft schedule here.
  • It is anticipated that the technical assistance and the investment support facility associated with the programme design will be delivered virtually and in English, however, where the easing of COVID-19 restrictions may allow (and it is safe to do so), selected components of the programme may be delivered through hybrid workshops to be hosted in Johannesburg, South Africa for those who are able to attend in person.
  • Thanks to generous funding support from USAID, the technical assistance and investment support facility associated with the design of the programme will be delivered to selected fund management firms free of charge.
  • Any indirect or other costs associated with participation in the WE>MI programme - including but not limited to travel to, and accommodation in, Johannesburg, South Africa (where select components of the programme may be delivered should it be possible to do so in person) - will however be paid by the selected fund management firm.

Eligibility

Fund management firms that are:

  • 51% Southern African women-owned* and
  • 51% Southern African women-managed* and
  • private equity or debt equity or infrastructure fund managers:
    • with an existing investment thesis
    • who are in the process of raising a fund, or are close to or at ‘First Close’ (i.e. has reached its first threshold amount of funds required to commence investment and close deals)
    • that is operational within the Southern African region i.e. directly benefits the Southern African region, and

*51% Southern African women-owned and women-managed firms means any legal entity or juristic person conducting a business, trade, or profession in a Southern African country, and having a shareholding or other equity interest in which one or more Southern African women nationals, directly or indirectly (i) beneficially owns or own or hold at least 51% of the ordinary shares or other equity interest of such entity; (ii) is or are entitled to (a) at least 51% of the economic interest and (b) exercise at least 51% of the voting rights in relation to such ordinary shares or other equity interest in such entity.

Preference will be given to fund management firms managing funds with an investment mandate that benefits Southern African women.

A fund manager for the purpose of WE>MI is defined as:

  • a fund management firm actively managing a private equity, private debt or infrastructure fund;
  • that has done so for at least 3 years; and
  • has at least 2 partners.

It therefore does not include an individual aspiring to gain the skills that are required to join a fund management firm.

The Application Process

You can click here to view the application form.

  • Completion of the Application form will require a material time investment. Applicants are encouraged to commence completion of the online application form well in advance of the submission date.
  • Each fund management firm is required to complete one application form.
  • The Application form distinguishes between responses and supporting documents that are required, and responses and supporting documents that are optional. Applicants will be prohibited from submitting an application form until all required responses and supporting documents have been completed or uploaded.
  • Information provided by fund management firms will be kept confidential, and therefore only be disclosed to the members of the WE>MI Selection Panel.
  • To be eligible for participation, fund management firms must submit their online application form by no later than 17:00 (5pm) Central African time (GMT +2) on Monday, 10 May 2021.
  • No late applications will be accepted.

The Selection Process

  • Applicants may expect to receive feedback in respect of their applications by no later than 17:00 (5pm) Central African time (GMT + 2) on Monday, 24 May 2021.
  • Shortlisted Applicants will be invited to present to the WE>MI Selection Panel during the week of 1 June 2021.
  • Successful Applicants will be notified of their selection for participation in the WE>MI by no later than during the week of 7 June 2021.

At least 10 fund management firms will be selected for participation in the WE>MI Programme.

Additional Questions

Draft Programme Outline: Technical Assistance Facility

This is an indicative schedule only and is therefore subject to change.

Workshop 1 21 June 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 2 23 June 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 3 28 June 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 4 30 June 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 5 02 July 09:00 – 12:00
Masterclass 1 12 July 09:00 – 12:30
Workshop 6 14 July 09:00 – 12:30
Workshop 7 16 July 09:00 – 12:30
Masterclass 2 26 July 09:00 – 12:30
Masterclass 3 28 July 16:00 – 18:00
Masterclass 4 30 July 09:00 – 11:00
Masterclass 5 03 August 09:00 – 11:00
Panel Discussion 1 05 August 16:00 – 18:30
Masterclass 6 17 August 09:00 – 11:00
Masterclass 7 24 August 09:00 – 11:00
Workshop 8 25 August 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 9 26 August 15:00 – 18:00
Workshop 10 01 September 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 11 02 September 15:00 – 18:00
Workshop 12 07 September 09:00 – 12:00
Workshop 13 09 September 15:00 – 18:00
Workshop 14 13 September 15:00 – 18:00
Workshop 15 15 September 09:00 – 12:00
Masterclass 8 27 September 15:00 – 17:00
Masterclass 9 28 September 15:00 – 17:00
Masterclass 10 29 September 15:00 – 17:00
Masterclass 11 30 September 15:00 – 17:00
Panel Discussion 2 07 October 16:00 – 18:30
Workshop 16 18 October 09:00 – 12:30
Workshop 17 20 October 09:00 – 12:30
Workshop 18 22 October 09:00 – 12:30
Masterclass 12 09 November 09:00 – 10:30
Masterclass 13 11 November 16:00 – 17:30
Masterclass 14 15 November 16:00 – 17:30
Masterclass 15 17 November 09:00 – 10:30
Masterclass 16 24 November 16:00 – 17:30