After three years of growth, STOA has defined its purpose. It is the result of a long and collegial reflection which allows to properly define the commitments of STOA as an impact fund and guide its investments and future actions.
“Financing and supporting the development of sustainable and resilient infrastructure for future generations in Africa, Latin America and Asia”. This statement, which is the result of nearly a year of collegial reflection, sums up the raison d’être (purpose) defined by STOA as an impact fund. “In 2021, after three years of growth, we deemed it essential to look back on the path we have taken and to discuss the meaning we give to our work. Defining our raison d’être has led us to clarify the principles that guide our action so that we can better pass them on to those who will join us in the years to come” explains Marie-Laure Mazaud, STOA’s Chief Executive Offier.
Three key commitments
Along with this statement comes a strategy and three key commitments. The first is to finance sustainable and resilient infrastructure to meet critical needs and produce concrete results. “Our investments focus on renewable energy production, public transport, water, sanitation and other sectors where investments can make a significant impact on the quality of life of populations and the development of emerging countries. We systematically check the adequacy of our investment opportunities with the Paris Agreement. Given the threats posed by climate change, we put resilience at the very heart of our investment strategy so as to ensure that the infrastructure we finance anticipate, withstand and adapt to risks and challenges ahead,” emphasizes Marie-Laure Mazaud.
The second commitment is to ensure that the projects supported have a positive impact for future generations. “STOA systematically includes in its decision-making criteria an impact analysis based on three criteria: accessibility, functionality, and cleanliness” says Jean-Pierre Barral, STOA’s Deputy CEO. As such, STOA makes an upfront assessment of the impact of each of its investment opportunities according to these three dimensions and supports only those projects which allow an extension of the said service to unserved populations (accessibility), or improve the quality of the service (functionality) or lead to a net reduction in pollution or greenhouse gas emissions (cleanliness). STOA also endeavors to be additional and play a catalytic role by investing where other funds are absent.
Finally, STOA is committed to providing its partners with an exemplary and long-term support. “Our support guarantees an exemplary management of assets, not only in regard to environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks, but also for compliance risks” underlines Marie-Laure Mazaud. Our approach ensures a proper risk management system which notably follows the performance standards defined by the International Finance Corporation (IFC).
These commitments will be implemented immediately. Their achievement will be verified by a series of indicators and the newly set up Raison d’Être Governance Committee.