The African Women Leadership Fund Initiative (AWLFI) 2020 Application

The African Women Leadership Fund Initiative (AWLFI) 2020 Application

Deadline: June 30th 2020

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and Standard Bank Group are calling on women fund managers across Africa to apply to join the African Women Leadership Fund initiative (AWLF), an innovative impact fund that will provide capital and expertise to successful candidates.

The AWLF Initiative has been established with the aim of uplifting female-owned and managed asset management firms and providing a defined economic stimulus to achieve sustainable economic growth in Africa. The fund, the first of its kind, aims to raise up to $1 billion over 10 years (€910 million or R19 billion) for women fund managers, who in turn will invest in high-impact businesses and projects across the continent, thus driving entrepreneurship.

Having already received some applications, the AWLF Initiative is inviting more applications from established women-owned or women-managed funds that participate in listed markets and short-term private debt.


  • Under this first phase of the AWLF Initiative’s implementation, funding will be allocated to asset managers across North, East, Southern and West Africa. Allocations will be made with a view to achieving the best possible regional and geographic diversification.
  • Applicants must be female, reside in Africa or be willing to relocate to Africa, and need to have proven fund- or asset-management experience. They will be subject to an investment and operational due-diligence process that will need to be completed by the end of August 2020, with the first phase of the fund becoming fully operational in the fourth quarter of this year.
  • The second phase of the fund’s launch will be announced at a later stage and investments will be made into women-owned or women-managed private equity funds. The third phase will target first-time women fund managers through an Emerging Manager Seed Capital Programme.
  • While the fund is sector-agnostic, it will have a preference towards high-impact sectors including manufacturing, education, healthcare, renewable energy, and technology.


  • Phase 1: AWLFI will invest in established women-owned fund management firms or in fund managers with the capability to take on segregated mandates. These Managers will operate in the listed space.
  • Phase 2: In the second round of funding, the AWLFI will look to invest in existing Private Equity Funds, thus enabling the fund to hold a combination of listed and private equity investments.
  • Phase 3: An incubation programme to put new women fund managers on the map.

There have been previous calls to participate in the AWLFI. If you have applied previously, please confirm your application by emailing [email protected]

Who is this for?

Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the AWLFI  is suitable for:

  • Established women fund managers in the listed or private market space who own, or partly own, an asset management firm
  • Women professionals working in existing and established firms with suitable fund management experience (experience can be as a co-fund manager) in the listed or private market space

For More Information: Visit the Official Webpage of the UNECA/Standard Bank Group African Women Leadership Fund Initiative 2020

About Israel Wellington Jeremiah

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