The United States Agency for International Development’s Innovation, Technology, and Research (ITR) Hub within the Bureau for Development, Democracy, and Innovation (DDI) seeks to develop new partnerships to mobilize private capital for the information and communications technology (ICT) sector in emerging markets under the Digital Connectivity and Cybersecurity Partnership (DCCP).
As part of USAID’s commitment to strengthen digital economies in emerging markets, this Addendum is soliciting concepts under the “Investing in the Digital Economy: Mobilizing Private Capital for the ICT Industry in Emerging Markets” program to catalyze private investment in digital solutions that strengthen open, inclusive, and secure digital ecosystems in emerging markets. This program will support new or existing investment funds (equity or debt) to accelerate sustainable market growth for internet service providers (ISPs) and financial technology companies serving traditionally excluded consumer populations in emerging markets.
This call for concepts seeks to develop new and innovative public-private alliances with the private sector to advance the following objectives:
- Objective 1: Support the sustainable growth and expansion of competitive internet service providers (ISPs) in emerging markets. USAID will support the launch or expansion of a new or existing investment fund supporting the growth and expansion of competitive ISPs in USAID partner countries. These ISPs (local providers when available) will not necessarily be large mobile network operators (MNOs), but are more likely to be smaller, competitive firms such as wireless ISPs, firms that offer community Wi-Fi “hotspots” or local access solutions, providers that offer fixed internet access to community anchor institutions like health clinics, schools, and universities, and similar competitors.
- Objective 2: Support the sustainable growth and expansion of competitive financial technology companies in emerging markets. An open, inclusive, and secure digital economy requires more than secure networks and internet access – it also requires robust and secure digital financial services (DFS) provided through these networks. Parallel to this global market demand for safe, secure digital financial solutions in emerging markets, pandemic-induced market constraints has created a sector-wide liquidity crunch and economic shocks, which have disproportionately affected women, small businesses, lower income customers, and rural households in emerging markets. In response to these market conditions, USAID seeks to partner with a private sector fund manager offering affordable financing to financial technology companies providing solutions that promote financial inclusion and income generation in emerging markets.
- USAID will contribute up to $1,150,000 to this program to develop two GDAs with the following resource allocations:
- One connectivity-focused GDA with up to $650,000 in USG grant capital and a minimum of $1,300,000 in private sector resource commitments
- One digital finance-focused GDA with up to $500,000 in USG grant capital and a minimum of $1,000,000 in private sector resource commitments
Proposed partnerships should focus on countries where USAID is currently present. For a full list of USAID presence countries. While this Addendum is global in scope, priority regions include Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Both single-country and multi-country partnership concepts will be considered.
For more information, visit https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=332996