Geneva, 19 May 2009 - The International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm) has raised more than US$ 2 billion dollars on the international capital markets so far to support life-saving immunisation programmes through the GAVI Alliance.
IFFIm board chairman Alan Gillespie told participants at a meeting on innovative financing in Geneva on Tuesday that there is a strong demand among individual and institutional investors for ethical investments.
This is just the beginning and we believe we can raise another US$ 2 billion. The demand is there.
IFFIm board chairman Alan Gillespie
IFFIm harnesses the strength of the public and private sectors for development and we are seeing strong demand for ethical investments such as IFFIm Vaccine Bonds," Gillespie said.
"This is just the beginning and we believe we can raise another US$ 2 billion. The demand is there."
IFFIm was launched in 2006 to rapidly accelerate the availability and predictability of funds for immunisation. The funds raised are used by the GAVI Alliance, a public-private partnership which aims to reduce the number of vaccine-preventable deaths and illness among children under five. GAVI provides funds to purchase and deliver vaccines and strengthen health services in more than 70 developing countries.
IFFIm is backed by the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Norway and South Africa which have pledged to contribute US$ 5.3 billion to IFFIm over 20 years. IFFIm converts these long-term government pledges into immediately available cash by issuing bonds on the capital markets.
This strong financial base enables IFFIm to have a triple-A rating from the three major rating agencies making it an attractive and ethical investment opportunity to both individual and institutional investors alike. The World Bank acts as financial adviser and Treasury Manager to IFFIm.
"The funds raised by IFFIm help GAVI reach more children with life-saving vaccines and help us make long-term commitments to developing countries," said Dr Julian Lob-Levyt, GAVI Alliance CEO
. "IFFIm is a major funding source for our programmes, but we will still need an additional US$ 400 million per year in order to reach our goals by 2015."
IFFIm's initial benchmark offering in November 2006 raised US$1 billion among institutional investors globally and a second offering in March 2008 raised the equivalent of US$ 223 million from private investors in Japan.
In the first five months of 2009, IFFIm has raised an additional US$ 829 million in Japan and the UK from both private and institutional investors.
The International Finance Facility for Immunisation Company (IFFIm) is a multilateral development institution created to accelerate the availability of predictable, long-term funds for health and immunisation programmes through the GAVI Alliance (formerly the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation) in 70 of the poorest countries around the world.
IFFIm was created as a development financing tool to help the international community achieve the Millennium Development Goals. IFFIm's financial base consists of legally binding grants payments from its sovereign sponsors (France, Italy, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Sweden and the UK), on the basis of which IFFIm issues bonds in the international capital markets. IFFIm is currently rated AAA/Aaa/AAA by Fitch Ratings Limited ("Fitch"), Moody's Investors Service Inc. ("Moody's") and Standard & Poor's Ratings Services ("S&P").
IFFIm was established as a charity with the Charity Commission for England and Wales and is registered in England and Wales as a company limited by guarantee with number 5857343 and as a charity with number 1115413. For more information, please visit: www.iffim.org
The securities referred to in this document have not been, and will not be, registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), or under the securities legislation of any state of the United States, and may not be offered or sold in the United States, other than pursuant to an exemption from, or in a transaction not subject to, the registration requirements of the Securities Act. IFFIm does not presently intend to make a public offer of securities in the United States or to register any securities under the Securities Act. The securities referred to in this document will only be offered or sold outside the United States in offshore transactions in reliance on Regulation S under the Securities Act.