We support the broad, social goal of our clients in raising the quality of life for people in every part of the world. The poorest communities, without access to basic financial and social services, are in particular need of financing and employment opportunities, affordable housing, education and health care, clean water and water sanitation technology and investment in clean and renewable energy. Our clients are regularly featured in such publications as the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and the Economist. Representative examples of our work in each of our SSF sectors are as follows:
Microfinance. We have helped establish microfinance institutions (MFIs); helped form private equity funds that invest in MFIs; advised an online program that connects investors with MFIs; advised a nonprofit that subsidizes MFIs on transactions and structured finance; analyzed foreign exchange risk issues; and reviewed microlending regulatory schemes in over two dozen jurisdictions.
Education. We are representing a student lender that offers private education loans to high-quality graduate students at better terms than are offered by the federal government as it scales to fund its originations through the issuance of public debt.
Health. We are representing our impact investing client in connection with a medical credit fund that is providing debt capital to health clinics in Sub Saharan Africa (“SSA”). SSA accounts for 11% of the world’s population, bears 24% of the global disease burden, 44% of the world’s communicable diseases, and commands less than 1% of the global health expenditure. The primary objective of the fund is to enable low-income people in SSA to access affordable quality healthcare services.
Housing. We are working with one of the largest international development organizations to structure an innovative, community-led REIT investment opportunity for low-income members in the United States that includes a public-private partnership with a major metropolitan City. The program is expected to facilitate direct small investments by low income individuals into commercial property in their own neighborhood, providing an alternative to traditional industrial development agency financing and other savings/wealth building programs and, at the same time, addressing issues related to gentrification and community investment.
Water and sanitation. We serve as outside counsel for a prominent not-for-profit organization that works to improve water supply and sanitation for poor communities around the world and has an innovative water credit program that draws on microfinance principles to deliver money for water projects that impact those without access to safe water.
Energy. Representing a web-based platform for individuals to invest in solar energy projects, for a business concept similar to other crowdfunding sites like our client Kiva, but with a focus on funding solar energy installations and applications, particularly in rural areas of developing countries where people lack access to electricity. Providing legal services in establishing the legal entity, including advising on the new hybrid corporate forms, international lending and foreign currency restrictions, securities regulations and consumer protection laws, and solar project finance.