Hacienda Yaxcopoil, Merida, Yucatan. Photo: Graciela Reyes
The Latin American Impact Investment Forum (FLII) 2022 held in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico, last March, was an excellent setting to showcase the project “Business Development and Finance Facility of the Mesoamerican Reef (MAR+Invest)”, whose main goal is to unlock private capital for investment in reef conservation in the Mesoamerican Reef (MAR) ecoregion.
The project was launched during the second day of the FLII, during the initial plenary session, generating interest and follow up questions.
Since 2011, the FLII has brought together investors, entrepreneurs, and other multi-sectoral actors to mobilize capital for projects aimed at solving the most pressing social and environmental problems through innovative market solutions.
What is the solution offered by MAR+Invest?
This multi-stakeholder approach will develop and finance enterprises that generate coral positive outcomes and market returns, says María José González, Executive Director of the Mesoamerican Reef Fund (MAR Fund), one of the MAR+Invest presenters during the FLII.
Karla Gallardo, of Viwala, pointed out that the market solutions that MAR+Invest will focus on, will have an impact on coral reefs through restoration, protection and/or reduction of threats.
According to María Eugenia Arreola, Executive Director of Sureste Sostenible A.C., MAR+Invest is a new blended finance model for the MAR that brings together expertise in conservation, entrepreneurship, investment and evaluation of coral ecosystems and different types of capital (commercial, philanthropic, development, public). It is designed to unlock private investment by overcoming the barriers that lead to the systemic lack of funding and development support for projects delivering MAR positive outcomes.
MAR+Invest, led by MAR Fund, convenes a partnership of organizations from the MAR countries, including Healthy Reefs for Healthy People Initiative, Mexican Fund for the Conservation of Nature, and New Ventures & Viwala.
If you want to learn more about MAR+Invest please click here.