Block Invests C $ 3 Million in Canada’s Largest and Innovative Indigenous Social Impact Fund
OTTAWA, Ontario, June 16, 2022-(BUSINESS WIRE)-The Indigenous Growth Fund (FCA Inc.) is welcoming its first private investment, marking a milestone in the public-private partnership focused on restoring growth and prosperity in the Indigenous economy. The FCA, an Aboriginal investment fund, is under the direction of the National Association of Aboriginal Capital Corporations (ANSAF).
As FCA’s first private investor, Block, a technology company focused on financial services and expanding economic access for all, is investing $ 3 million (CAD). Block’s investment, as part of its $ 100 million (USD) global social impact investment, will provide loans to more Indigenous entrepreneurs who need the investment to start or grow their business through a growing number of Aboriginal Financial Institutions. (AFIs) across Canada.
Create a sustainable flow of capital for indigenous entrepreneurs
“Our collaboration with the Block shows how similar the private and public impact of investors is. We must all work together to contribute to economic reconciliation. This reconciliation will only be possible by investing in indigenous investments. Private investors such as Block are critical to ensuring the growth of FCA as a sustainable and scalable fund, providing a continuous flow of capital to Indigenous Financial Institutions to support the next generations of Indigenous entrepreneurs, ”said Shannin Metatawabin, Chief Executive Officer. of the National Association of Aboriginal Capital Corporations. “We know that this investment will ignite and inspire other businesses to also contribute to economic reconciliation,” Metatawabin said.
The Return to Indigenous Development
“Block shares ANSAF’s vision to accelerate the speed and scale of return to Indigenous prosperity through its first-of-its-kind Indigenous Growth Fund,” said Courtney Robinson, Global Head of Financial Inclusion at Block. “Our investment in the Indigenous Growth Fund delivers on our commitment to economic reconciliation and reflects the Block’s goal of increasing access to the economy,” Robinson said.
Since opening applications for AFIs in November 2021, the FCA has provided $ 10 million to AFIs making business loans available to their clients.
“Indigenous businesses are currently in high demand in Canada and around the world, but access to capital remains a challenge for indigenous entrepreneurs who want to grow their business,” said Nicole McLaren, Founder and CEO of Raven Reads, a business development service. bringing award-winning Native content and literature right to your doorstep. “Consumers, business owners and investors can help support the growth of Indigenous businesses, with an immediate and positive impact on Indigenous families and communities. »
“When our government first invested in the Indigenous Peoples Growth Fund last year, ANSAF issued a call for action for partners to come together, expand access to capital and provide more opportunities for Aboriginal entrepreneurs. , “said Honorable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development.” Today, Block has responded to that call, to join ANSAF and our government to strengthen our society’s desire for reconciliation. . »
“Block’s investment in the Indigenous Growth Fund is a major step forward in ensuring that indigenous businesses can continue to contribute to the vitality of their communities and local economy. By helping to further stimulate the creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of indigenous communities, Block is positioning itself as a new partner on the federal government’s shared path toward economic reconciliation. said the Honorable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario.
Self -determination for indigenous entrepreneurs
“The Indigenous Growth Fund (AGF) represents a positive energy shift towards economic reconciliation and economic self -determination for indigenous entrepreneurs,” Metatawabin summarizes. “Accepting our first private investment is an important step in enabling the Aboriginal Growth Fund to realize its vision of better supporting Aboriginal business owners to bring the growth and prosperity of their businesses to the forefront. next level. “Metatawabin said.” Block’s investment also indicates that retail investors view FCA as a well-structured, institutional-grade fund. He is already involved in real growth for our IFA network and their customers. will see the light of day.
The National Association of Aboriginal Capital Corporations (NACAF) is a network of over 50 Aboriginal Financial Institutions (AFIs) whose mission is to stimulate economic growth for all Aboriginal people in Canada. The AFI network has provided more than 50,000 loans totaling more than $ 3 billion to businesses owned by First Nations, Métis and Inuit. ANSAF supports the network by building the capacity of AFIs and promoting the development of Aboriginal businesses. The goal of NAFSC is to provide opportunities for Indigenous entrepreneurs and increase prosperity for Indigenous people in Canada. These efforts increase the social and economic self-reliance and sustainability of Indigenous peoples and communities. ANSAF advocates for Indigenous economic development focusing on the following: representing the unified voice of AFIs; publish national and regional results on the work of IFAs; development of partnerships and capacity building; and offers Aboriginal Entrepreneurship Program (AEP) products and services to AFIs. For more information visit nacca.ca.
About the Indigenous Growth Fund
The Indigenous Growth Fund (ACF) is a new $ 153 million investment fund, led by the National Association of Aboriginal Capital Corporations (NAFC), that will provide access to capital that small and medium -sized businesses have long sought ( SME). time and where they are not. Indigenous entrepreneurs from all sectors can access the Fund through business loans from a nationwide network of Indigenous Financial Institutions (AFIs). Major investments in CFA come from the Government of Canada and the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), with additional commitments from Export Development Canada (EDC) and Farm Credit Canada (FCC). The structure is based on the ability of AFIs to deploy capital based on their unique understanding of the communities they serve and their connection to them. For more information visit nacca.ca/igf/.
About the Block
Block (NYSE: SQ) is a technology company dedicated to financial services. Consists of Square, Cash App, Spiral, and TIDAL TBD, we make tools to help more people access the economy. Square helps sellers manage and grow their business using an integrated ecosystem of commerce solutions, business software, and banking services. The Cash App allows anyone to send, spend or invest their money in stocks or Bitcoin. Spiral (formerly Square Crypto) builds and funds free Bitcoin and open-source projects. Artists use TIDAL to help them succeed as entrepreneurs and connect more deeply with followers. TBD creates an open platform for developers to facilitate access to Bitcoin and other blockchain technologies without having to go through an institution. To learn more, visit block.xyz.
About Block’s Global Impact Investing
In 2020, Block, driven by the company’s goal to strengthen the economy and its ongoing commitment to racial equality, set up a $ 100 million (USD) global social impact investment to support minorities. and underserved communities. The $ 10 million is intended as investment in international funds and lenders that focus their priorities on underserved communities in Block markets outside the United States.
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