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Design Funding

Convergence offers unique design funding and market acceleration programs for blended finance practitioners to secure feasibility, proof of concept, and expansion stage grants and acceleration support to develop and launch catalytic blended finance vehicles aiming to attract private capital.

Current Windows
Gender-Responsive Climate Finance Window
The Gender-Responsive Climate Finance Design Funding Window will award early-stage grant funding for the design and launch of innovative blended finance vehicles focused on the intersection of climate change and gender equality in emerging markets globally. This Window is funded by the Government of Canada. Le Guichet de financement de la conception du financement climatique sensible au genre va accorder des subventions de démarrage pour la conception et le lancement de véhicules de financement mixte innovants axés sur l’intersection des problématiques de changement climatique et d’égalité des genres dans les marchés émergents du monde entier. Ce guichet est financé par le gouvernement du Canada. Concept notes accepted all year round.
Application Deadline
30 Aug 2024
Gender-Responsive Climate Finance Window
Asia Climate Solutions Design Grant Window
The Asia Climate Solutions (ACS) Design Grant will provide early-stage grants for high-impact climate financing solutions in emerging markets in Asia. The Grant aims to mobilize private capital at scale into high-impact target sectors across climate mitigation and adaptation. The concept note submission deadline for Cycle 3 of the Asia Climate Solutions Design Grant will be announced soon.
Application Deadline
To be Announced
Asia Climate Solutions Design Grant Window
SDG Impact Finance Initiative Design Funding Window
The SDG Impact Finance Initiative Design Funding awards grants for innovative impact finance solutions that will mobilize private capital for sustainable development in emerging and frontier markets. The current cycle seeks solutions aligned with SDG 3 (Good Health & Well-Being), SDG 13 (Climate Action) and SDG 16 (Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions). Concept note submission for Cycle 3 of the SDG Impact Finance Initiative Design Funding Window is now open. Upon submission of the concept notes, Convergence will review all Concept Notes and invite select applicants to submit a full proposal for funding consideration.
Application Deadline
15 Mar 2024
SDG Impact Finance Initiative Design Funding Window
Past Windows
Asia Natural Capital Design Funding Window
The Asia Natural Capital Design Funding Window provided grant funding for the design and launch of catalytic blended finance solutions focused on natural capital in Asia. This Window was funded thanks to the support of the RS Group, a family office based in Asia. It is closed and no longer accepting applications.
Asia Natural Capital Design Funding Window
Indo-Pacific Design Funding Window
The Indo-Pacific Design Funding Window provided grant funding for the design and launch of catalytic blended finance solutions focused on climate finance and gender equality in certain countries in the Indo-Pacific region. This Window was funded by the Australian Government. It is closed and is not accepting applications.
Indo-Pacific Design Funding Window
Global Emerging Markets Design Funding Window
The Global Emerging Markets Design Funding Window provided grant funding for the design and launch of catalytic blended finance solutions across emerging markets. This Window was funded by Global Affairs Canada. It is closed and no longer accepting applications.
Global Emerging Markets Design Funding Window
Tertiary Education Financing Competition
This competition aimed to identify and award successful existing student financing solutions to: 1.) help more young people enter tertiary education, 2.) drive improved education outcomes, and 3.) increase youth employment. | (French) Ce concours a identifié les solutions de financement d’études existantes qui peuvent aider davantage de jeunes à entrer dans l’enseignement supérieur et ainsi améliorer les résultats en matière d’éducation ainsi que l’augmentation de l’emploi des jeunes. | (Spanish) Este premio identifié soluciones exitosas de financiamión de estudiantes existentes que pueden ayudar a más jóvenes a ingresar a la educación terciaria y, por lo tanto, impulsar mejores resultados educativos, así como un mayor empleo juvenil.
Tertiary Education Financing Competition
Frequently asked questions
What is Design Funding?

Convergence’s Design Funding is a unique market acceleration program providing early-stage grant funding focused exclusively on the design of innovative blended finance solutions. Despite the significant potential of blended finance, the reality is that often transactions are complex, time intensive, and high-cost to structure and launch. Design Funding is meant to support this process and encourage organizations to design solutions that would otherwise be too risky or complex to pursue, but show high potential to attract private capital at scale if successful.

Convergence operates multiple design funding windows with different thematic and geographic targets.

What kind of grants are provided?

Addressing the spectrum of blended finance solution design activities, Convergence offers feasibility, study and proof-of-concept and expansion grants. Feasibility study grants are to be used to explore the feasibility of a blended finance solution. For example, activities funded under a feasibility study grant could include assessing the investability/bankability of a transaction, conducting market scoping, and developing the vehicle structure. Proof-of-concept grants are to be used to complete all design and structuring activities required to get a blended finance solution to launch. For example, activities funded under a proof-of-concept grant could include finalizing the capital structure and financial model, establishing the legal structure, and finalizing key documents. Expansion grants are used to support already launched vehicles to scale and reach a financially viable size. For example, activities funded under an expansion grant could include fundraising/marketing to reach capital-raising targets, producing key legal documents, due diligence on the initial pipeline and capital deployment and hiring of key personnel. Grant amounts and duration depend on the solution’s stage of development as well as the Design Funding window under which the grant is awarded.

Who is eligible to apply for Design Funding?

Any organization or consortium of organizations is eligible to apply for funding. For example, eligible organizations could include asset owners, asset managers, financial intermediaries, advisory firms, financial institutions, foundations, not-for-profit organizations, social enterprises, and corporations. The lead organization must be able to provide proof of incorporation and financial statements for the previous fiscal year.

Multi-lateral organizations (e.g. United Nations Agencies) and development banks (e.g. World Bank Group, Development Finance Institutions (DFIs)) are not eligible to apply for or directly receive a grant but may be part of a consortium with private sector firm(s) and/or non-governmental organization(s) (NGOs) receiving a grant.

How do you apply for Design Funding?

Visit our Design Funding page for Windows that are currently accepting applications. If you and your solution fit the eligibility criteria for an open Window, then please follow the instructions on the specific page to apply. Note that each solution can only be submitted to one Window.

Which window should I apply to?

It is the applicant’s responsibility to choose the Window for which their initiative is best suited. Visit our Design Funding page and navigate to individual Window pages to learn more about the focus areas and eligibility criteria for each Window. If an initiative is eligible under multiple Windows, organizations must select one Window to apply to. If an applicant has applied to one Window and has been rejected, they are able to apply to another Window with the same concept, provided they are also eligible under that Window. Organizations are able to apply to multiple Windows simultaneously with unique initiatives.

See More
Funders
RS Group
Global Affairs Canada
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Monetary Authority of Singapore
UBS Optimus Foundation
Olayan Group
SDG Impact Finance Initiative