Mirova, the affiliate of Natixis Investment Managers dedicated to sustainable investment, raised $171m (€160m) in the first closing of a blended finance debt fund that aims to accelerate the clean-energy transition in emerging markets.

Long-standing partners such as US International Development Finance Corporation, Swedfund and Sida, as well as new investors, provided catalytic capital for the Gigaton Fund 1 fund, while Natixis Private Equity invested to further mobilise private investors.

In June 2022, Mirova acquired private debt management firm SunFunder, to expand its emerging markets impact investment platform. Mirova SunFunder is targeting a total fundraise of $500m for the Gigaton Fund 1 fund and expects to deploy $1.2bn of private debt throughout its life primarily to small and medium-sized enterprises in solar home systems, agri-solar, commercial and industrial solar, telecom tower solarisation, mini-grids and other promising sectors such as e-mobility, battery storage, climate-smart food systems, energy efficiency and carbon credit pre-financing.

Geographically, its primary focus is countries in Africa and Asia Pacific predominantly, as well as Latin America and the Middle East.

Ryan Levinson, director of the Mirova Gigaton Fund and head of emerging market energy transition, said: “Today, more than 770 million people in the world lack energy access – mostly in Africa and developing Asia – regions with populations that are also the most vulnerable to the global climate crisis.

”The Mirova Gigaton Fund will provide medium-long debt financing for clean energy projects and companies, accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy and improving energy access in Africa, Asia Pacific and Latin America. We are grateful to all of the Mirova Gigaton Fund investors for their support and partnership.”

To read the latest edition of the latest IPE Real Assets magazine click here.