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Annual Report 2022

  • BIO relaunched its core business: contributing to achieving the SDGs by investing and supporting private enterprise. While the Russian invasion of Ukraine triggered fundamental changes in our world for the years to come, the relaunch was very successful. BIO’s new business activity was the highest ever in the history of the company.
  • BIO committed EUR 225 M to new investment projects, and EUR 1.67 M of subsidies to 20 new BDSF projects. At the end of 2022, BIO had 147 outstanding investments, worth EUR 680.6 M
  • New provisions and write-offs over 2022 are much higher than targeted, due to a combination of major setbacks on two big investments, and the negative effects of the Russian aggression in Ukraine.
  • Strategies and policies regarding climate financing, decent work, E&S ambitions, the procurement of solar panels, and the grievance mechanism were developed or updated.
  • Much was done on internal and external communications, with the launch of the BIO Burger Days, the celebration of BIO’s Nairobi liaison office, the award of the Awa prize and the launch of the Ubora prize. We organised three workshops with NGOs to discuss BIO’s development mandate, its climate strategy and its agriculture strategy.
  • The 2021 Development & Sustainability Report gives a comprehensive overview of BIO’s development impact
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Annual Report 2021

  • BIO committed EUR 104 M to 22 new investment projects.
  • At the end of 2021, BIO had EUR 662.5 M outstanding investments in 232 entrepreneurial development projects, benefitting over two million households.
  • BIO committed a total of EUR 913,989 in subsidies to a record 18 new technical assistance projects.
  • With regard to internal organisation, processes and procedures, BIO thoroughly updated its credential monitoring (KYC); updated its client grievance mechanism, and the code of ethics and whistle-blower policies for its staff.
  • BIO established a Committee for Prevention and Protection at Work to monitor health and safety at BIO.
  • Plaza, the new BIO intranet platform was launched.
  • In August 2021, a new Board of Directors was installed, chaired by Ms Géraldine Georges.
  • In September 2021, BIO published its first-ever annual Development and Social Impact Report, which presents its theory of change and a range of figures on the development effects of BIO’s investing and assistance activity.
  • The SDG Frontier Fund rounded off its fundraising successfully, reaching its final closing with a total commitment of EUR 36 M.
  • The BIO team moved to new offices, which, with their semi-open arrangement and spacious Carpe Diem cafeteria, strongly encourage collaboration and teamwork. The festive opening of the new offices was graced by the Minister for Development Cooperation, Ms Meryame Kitir, and included a testimony by Ms Mariam Djibo, CEO of Advans Côte d’Ivoire, a microfinance institution with a particular focus on gender.
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Annual Report 2020


  • 31 new investments approved for a total amount of EUR 168 M and 21 investments signed for a total amount of EUR 194 M
  • 14 Technical Assistance subsidies approved to enhance the impact of investment projects
  • A portfolio of 144 outstanding investments, directly responsible for 240 thousand jobs and contributing indirectly to an additional 3.1 million jobs
  • 10 loans fully reimbursed and 1 equity investment exited
  • An Emergency Financing Facility of EUR 50 M created
  • Total investment capital reached EUR 1,062 M (+4%)
  • EUR 56 M capital injected by the Belgian state, of which EUR 25 M earmarked to combat climate change
  • BIO suffers a loss of EUR 14.6 M
  • First close of the SDG Frontier Fund at EUR 25.3 M and the first 4 investments signed
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Annual Report 2019


  • BIO made 31 new commitments, totaling EUR 199 million. This brought the total net signed commitments up to EUR 783 million.
  • BIO signed up to the 2X Challenge, which calls for DFIs to join together to collectively mobilise USD 3 billion in gender-smart investments.
  • BIO made its first investments out of a new facility targeting projects with a particularly high development impact but with high risks and relatively lower expected financial return: Fairtrade Access Fund and Alterfin.
  • BIO launched the SDG Frontier Fund, enabling private individual and institutional investors to co-invest with BIO into private equity SME Funds.
  • BIO reached over EUR 1 billion in investment capital
  • BIO refreshed its baseline: “Investing in a sustainable future”, expressing our aspiration for sustainable livelihoods all around the globe.
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Annual Report 2018


  • BIO decided on 22 new investments for a total of €150M.
  • BIO monitored 83 outstanding loan investments. BIO employees also personally participated in boards and committees of its 52 equity investments.
  • BIO’s Special Operations team intensively accompanied clients in trouble. They managed to reduce BIO’s total provisions for the company’s outstanding investments from 5,96 % (2017) to 5,02 % (2018).
  • BIO granted 10 subsidies totalling € 850,000 to new capacity building and technical assistance projects.
  • 15 loans were reimbursed and 6 equity investments were exited.
  • BIO established a new facility for investing in small projects with a particularly high development impact but with high risks and relatively lower expected financial return.
  • In 2018, investment capital grew thanks to a capital injection by the Belgian State of € 61 M, of which € 20 M was earmarked for investments to combat climate change. Furthermore, the substantial net gain of € 67.8 M of 2017 on an investment in a Cambodian MFI was converted into capital, bringing BIO’s means available for investment to € 937.7 M.
  • BIO has a brand new logo. The colours signal we are Belgian. Its style refers to our affiliation with Belgium’s development cooperation.

Annual Report 2017


  • 27 new investments decided for a total of 161 million euro, including
    • A participation in a micro-financing institution in the Maghreb providing capital to over ten thousand mainly women and youth to establish and develop microbusinesses
    • A participation in a fund investing in projects in Africa that combine sustainable forestry management with providing jobs and income to tens of thousands of people living in and around the forests.
    • A participation in a fund that enables its investees to provide micro-insurance to low-income people in South-East Asia.
    • Four investments to provide 494 thousand people with renewable energy and thereby avoid 181,600 tonnes CO2 eq Greenhouse Gas Emissions per year.
  • Monitoring of 145 million euro of outstanding loan investments, personal involvement in our 340 million euro of equity investments to make them successful
  • 7 subsidies totalling 1 million euro to new capacity building and technical assistance projects of our clients, and one investment support grant
  • 18 loans fully reimbursed and 6 equity investments exited, virtually all companies involved sufficiently strengthened to continue to develop their businesses without further BIO support
  • Development of BIO’s agriculture strategy increasing its relevance for small-holders
  • Growth of BIO’s investment capital by 117 million euro: 50-million-euro capital injection by the Belgian state and 67-million-euro net capital gain through the sale of our participation in a Cambodian MFI
  • Fundraising for a facility for institutional private investors to co-invest in BIO’s projects