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Sub practice
Sub practice

Microfinance and Social Investment

At Allen & Overy we believe that we influence the wider communities in which we live and work and must ensure that our influence is a positive one.

Our Microfinance and Social Investment practice encompasses more than 350 lawyers located in over 30 offices across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, and includes many of the leading practitioners in our key practice groups including banking, capital markets, corporate and dispute resolution.

The team has advised on a number of microfinance-related transactions and prides itself on being able to provide real and much-needed solutions helping to transform businesses in developing economies. Our clients include microfinance institutions (MFIs), banks, private investors and institutional investors. Whether on a pro bono or fee-paying basis, we aim to handle every case in exactly the same way – with professionalism and care.

On the social investment side, we have been involved in advising Social Finance Limited (Social Finance) on their Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), which are a unique investment product, structured as a fund, that directs private-sector money to fund public sector projects. In this case, the investment proceeds fund prisoner rehabilitation programmes, creating a financial return to the investors that is dependent on levels of recidivism in the prisoner group. Legal fees for negotiating and setting up the Social Finance prisoner programmes could have run into hundreds of thousands of pounds, a particularly significant amount when measured against a fundraising target of £5 million. To solve the puzzle, Allen & Overy stepped in to provide over 1,500 hours of legal advice on a pro bono basis, to help Social Finance craft and negotiate the SIB, an investment product enthusiastically accepted by investors, the Ministry of Justice and HM Treasury and used in many jurisdictions around the world as an example of groundbreaking social finance funding.

News & insights

View of a city

Publications: 13 MAY 2021

Sustainability linked lending in the leveraged finance market

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) matters have long been a talking point in the leveraged finance market, but the end of 2020 and the first few months of 2021 have seen deal flow take off for…

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Interior of a modern gym

News: 12 MAY 2021

A&O advises Virgin Active as the group’s Part 26A restructuring plans are approved by Mr Justice Snowden in landmark judgment

Mr Justice Snowden has just handed down his landmark judgment sanctioning the Virgin Active group’s three inter-conditional Part 26A restructuring plans (the "Plans").

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Sheets of folded material

News: 11 MAY 2021

A&O advises Warburg Pincus affiliate on acquisition financing

Allen & Overy has advised Green Fin Investments B.V., an affiliate of Warburg Pincus, a leading global private equity firm focused on growth investing, on the financing of its acquisition of a…

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Port of Newcastle ESG-focused refinancing

News: 10 MAY 2021

Allen & Overy advises Port of Newcastle on ESG-focused refinancing

Allen & Overy has advised Port of Newcastle (“PON”) on its ground-breaking refinancing transaction, including the introduction of a green loan and sustainability linked loan facilities.

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Recognition

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Social Finance and Impact Investment Group

At Allen & Overy, we believe that we influence the wider communities in which we live and work and must ensure that our influence is a positive one.