The Soros Economic Development Fund (SEDF) supports economic opportunities and promotes access to information, products, and services for underserved and vulnerable populations in countries around the world. We use a variety of program-related investments including equity, debt, and credit guarantees, to finance local businesses and initiatives and create jobs. On occasion, we may also provide grants for technical assistance or other essential support.
SEDF invests in small and medium enterprises, investment funds, and financial institutions that meet our criteria. We focus on for-profit companies that can provide both social and financial returns, thereby encouraging future private capital investments to fight poverty in communities worldwide. The rates of our financial return are generally below the market risk-adjusted rate of return.
SEDF is not a passive investor. We conduct rigorous due diligence and demand good governance from our portfolio companies. We generally take minority stakes, but require at least one board seat in each of our equity investments.
Established in 1997, SEDF has over $200 million in investment capital and employs 15 people in New York, Freetown, and Johannesburg.