Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (SEAF)
Active for more than twenty five years, SEAF has experience in the Impact Investing space that is amongst the deepest in the industry. SEAF began in 1989 as the CARE Small Business Assistance Corporation (CARESBAC), a single member NGO owned by CARE, the international relief and development organization. At the time of CARESBAC’s launch, the international developmental community had begun to recognize the growing importance of the private sector in achieving economic growth, both in developing countries and in the transition countries following the fall of the Berlin Wall. Governments, international development institutions, and commercial investors alike turned to growing SMEs to seek to achieve prosperity and political and economic stability. In the case of many transition countries, large corporations were state-owned and required privatization, resulting in large-scale unemployment. A healthy SME sector was considered vital to both provide for the needs of consumers, as well as to generate a robust boost in employment. In 1992, we launched our first fund in Poland, CARESBAC-Polska. We have since expanded throughout Central and Eastern Europe and into Africa, Asia and Latin America.