21 May 2019

Making a difference to people living in poverty

Working in partnership with DFID, we are committed to making investments that benefit local communities in some of the world’s poorest countries. We are increasingly using a range of cutting-edge measurement and evaluation tools to help us gain rapid insights into what impacts are being experienced by which suppliers, workers and customers, and how much impact occurs, in scale, depth and duration.

One exciting tool in our Rapid Insights Toolbox is Lean Data, an approach to impact measurement developed and deployed by the social enterprise 60 Decibels. This briefing sets out the key findings from over a dozen Lean Data studies which cumulatively surveyed thousands of customers, suppliers and workers across Africa and South Asia. These studies sought to discover more about who the beneficiaries of CDC investment are, as well as how their lives have been impacted.

The data in this snapshot is drawn from fourteen of our investee businesses that have completed LeanData projects. The companies involved are predominantly from our Impact Fund, which invests through intermediary funds into businesses across Africa and South Asia. The businesses that ultimately receive our investment provide underserved populations with access to better jobs and basic goods and services such as energy,water, sanitation, health, education and financial services.While this sample represents a small proportion of our total investment portfolio, the data comes from a good range of companies by sector and maturity. This means that while we are keen to unearth more insights, we are encouraged that we are already able to draw out some interesting early insights.