Access to capital is a major hurdle for SMEs in East Africa, and many businesses require strategic input as well as growth capital to reach the next stage of institutionalisation. Given the prevalence of the informal sector, the creation of formal jobs is of particular importance in this region. Formal jobs ensure better working conditions for employees, as well as social and medical insurance benefits, and increase government revenues through tax receipts. Operating in a challenging business environment, Catalyst II adds value to its portfolio companies by working alongside management to ensure implementation of best practice reporting, governance, health, safety, and other social and environmental standards. With an investment of USD 8 million in Catalyst Fund II, SIFEM will contribute to foster economic growth, support sustainable job creation, and promote the integration of the target countries into the world economy.