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An innovation lab to boost the potential of social entrepreneurs in Paraguay

Mar 24, 2016

The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group approved a grant of $900,000 in technical-cooperation for the project “Consolidation of a Social Innovation Laboratory Model: Koga Impact Lab.”

In Paraguay there has been an emergence of “social entrepreneurs,” who are willing to make innovative proposals that address the challenges of poverty based on market logic. Overall, the emergence of social enterprises is a recent phenomenon, yet have achieved significant results in Latin America, and undoubtedly require the consolidation of an appropriate ecosystem, that includes entities offering products and services at different stages of their development process.

The MIF will help Koga Impact Lab—the first pioneering social entrepreneurship laboratory in Paraguay—to increase the number of social enterprises in Paraguay and facilitate access to training and financing in order to scale them. Through four sequential specialized support programs, KOGA will help social entrepreneurs throughout the different stages of their business development. The project is expected to directly benefit 315 social entrepreneurs as well as 6,000 individuals living in poverty, through solutions offered by the entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurs will have different profiles, based on their business development phase (conception, startup, growth, and scale-up), as well as their origin (universities, researchers,
entrepreneurs, or actual members of the beneficiary communities, among others).

A key component of the project will be improving KOGA’s ability to launch financial products geared to social entrepreneurs. The MIF will contribute its experience and network of contacts to create a network of angel investors and design a pioneering proposal for a venture capital co-investment fund in the country where the MIF would be the anchor investor, thereby attracting public and private investors.


About KOGA

KOGA is a social enterprise created in 2012 as a pioneering social entrepreneurship laboratory in Paraguay, with the objective of promoting development through ideas that foster growth and the acceleration of projects having a social, environmental, and economic impact.

About the MIF

The Multilateral Investment Fund is the innovation lab for the Inter-American Development Bank Group. It conducts high-risk experiments to test new models for engaging and inspiring the private sector to solve economic development problems in Latin America and the Caribbean. The MIF addresses poverty and vulnerability by focusing on emerging businesses and smallholder farmers with the capacity to grow and create economic opportunities. Learn more at www.fomin.org

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