Calvert Closes $5M with South Africa Taxi

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Impact investor and market mover Calvert Foundation recently closed a new $5 million investment with SA Taxi, a credit provider that offers financial products and services for entrepreneurs in the minibus taxi business in South Africa.

The investment is the foundation’s first in international transportation infrastructure.

Why Calvert’s Investment Matters

Nearly 70% of households in South Africa rely on approximately 150 thousand minibus taxis.

They are a popular means of transportation for the state’s population because they are cheap, run late at night, travel flexibly to routes that can’t be reached by other forms of transport, and make convenient stops on long distances.

They are also dangerous.

Of the 36 lives lost daily in South Africa’s roads – 3 are killed in minibus related incidents. The industry’s biggest challenge is to transportation safer, more efficient and more affordable for entrepreneurs to run.

SA Taxis’s Role

Calvert’s investment with SA Taxi aims to help minibus entrepreneurs reach credit, “alongside insurance and other related vehicle services, providing a complete package to entrepreneurs.”

About 90% of SA Taxi’s clients otherwise “do not qualify for credit from traditional South African lenders. All clients are black South Africans, a group that historically has lacked access to finance due to the legacy of apartheid. Many of these borrowers reside in rural areas, which are particularly underserved by traditional banks.”

Sources: Calvert Foundation, CNBC Africa