Origins of IFFIm

From the UK's ground-breaking proposal in 2003 to the latest vaccine bond issuance, trace IFFIm's history in the making



January 2003

What IFF?

The government of the United Kingdom launches a proposal for an International Finance Facility (IFF) to provide significant additional funds for immediate development assistance. The proposal was inspired by the commitment of all members of the United Nations to meet the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.


November 2004

UK and France make the IFF a reality

The United Kingdom and France announce their commitment to launch an International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm) - a pilot that would apply the principles of the broader IFF on a smaller scale to the immunisation sector.


September 2005

Key European nations join the UK and France

The United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain and Sweden commit nearly US$ 4 billion to support and scale up the work of Gavi through the launch of IFFIm. This innovative "frontloading" approach is estimated to prevent the deaths of more than five million children from vaccine-preventable diseases.

December 2005

Norway joins IFFIm

At the 3rd Gavi Partners Meeting in New Delhi, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg announces the Government of Norway to join IFFIm by pledging US$ 27 million over five years, becoming its sixth government donor.


November 2006

IFFIm issues inaugural Vaccine Bonds

IFFIm raises US$ 1 billion through the inaugural issue of bonds to institutional investors, accelerating the availability of funds to be used for health and immunisation programmes through Gavi. The new funds will enable Gavi to build on its success and immunise more than 500 million children against vaccine-preventable diseases before 2015.


March 2007

South Africa joins IFFIm

The Republic of South Africa joins IFFIm, becoming its seventh government donor. With a commitment of US$ 20 million, South Africa becomes the first emerging market country donor to contribute to IFFIm.

November 2007

IFFIm raises almost US$ 1 billion in first year

IFFIm approaches US$ 1 billion raised in its first year, providing US$ 995 million to 43 of the world's poorest countries to spend on life-saving immunisation and health programmes.


March 2008

Japanese investors welcome Vaccine Bonds

The second IFFIm bond sale secures US$ 223 million from private investors in Japan. IFFIm's debut in Japan is the largest South African rand-denominated bond to date in the Uridashi market.


June 2009

The Netherlands joins IFFIm

The Netherlands displays its strong desire to stimulate innovation and to involve the private sector in development by pledging €60 million over eight years to IFFIm, becoming its eighth government donor.


November 2010

IFFIm prices inaugural benchmark in Australian dollars

The AUD 400 million, five-year bonds demonstrate institutional investors’ continued support for IFFIm and its humanitarian purpose.


March 2011

Australia joins IFFIm

Australia joins IFFIm by pledging AU$ 250 million over 20 years, becoming its ninth government donor.

July 2011

Independent evaluation of IFFIm

An independent evaluation of IFFIm by health care consulting firm HLSP concludes that IFFIm provides “extremely good development returns” and has helped “transform Gavi from a niche actor into a major player in international health.” The report cites IFFIm as a low-cost, efficient model, helping Gavi save an additional 2.1 million lives while delivering more than three times the value of each dollar spent.


February 2012

IFFIm gets a new board chair

Founding Chair Alan Gillespie steps down after six years, during which time IFFIm received pledges worth US$ 6.3 billion, helping it raise US$ 3.6 billion in bond proceeds. René Karsenti is appointed the new Chair.

May 2012

IFFIm vaccine bonds rated among 25 most influential

IFFIm’s early 2008 inaugural retail bond issue in Japan (see above) is cited by EuroWeek magazine as among the 25 most influential deals, helping set a trend of ethically-themed bonds sold in Japan.


February 2013

IFFIm honoured as a socially responsible investment

IFFIm is cited as “SRI Innovation of the Decade” by mtn-i, a news, data and analytics provider.

June 2013

IFFIm raises US$ 700 million

IFFIm issues its largest financing since its inaugural benchmark, raising US$ 700 million in a transaction jointly led by Daiwa Securities Group and Deutsche Bank. It is IFFIm’s first floating rate offer.


November 2014

IFFIm issues its first sukuk, raising US$ 500 million

IFFIm entered the sukuk market for the first time, raising US$ 500 million with a 3-year socially responsible investment that complies with Islamic law. The sukuk was coordinated by Standard Charted Bank, working with joint lead managers from four Muslim countries: National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Barwa Bank of Qatar, NCB Capital of Saudi Arabia and CIMB of Malaysia.


Inaugural sukuk awarded multiple prizes

IFFIm’s first sukuk transaction received the Financial Times’ Achievement in International Finance Award, Islamic Finance News’ Social Impact Deal of the Year 2014, EMEA Finance’s Best Supranational Sukuk and Euromoney’s Innovation in Islamic Finance and Global Finance Magazine’s Islamic Deal of the Year.


January 2015

Australia, France and the Netherlands increase commitments

Three IFFIm donors – Australia, France and the Netherlands – commit an additional US$ 280 million to IFFIm as Gavi’s pledging conference in Berlin, supporting efforts to immunise 300 million children between 2016-2020, preventing an additional 5 million to 6 million deaths. France increase its pledge by €150 million, adding to its €1.24 billion, 20-year pledge. The Netherlands increased its long-term pledge by €60 million and four years, adding to its €80 million, 8-year pledge. Australia increased its pledge by AU$ 37.5 million, adding to its AU$ 250 million, 20-year pledge.

July 2015

Addis action agenda highlights IFFIm model

At the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, the global development community recognised IFFIm's unique value and encouraged exploring its potential applicability to wider development efforts.

September 2015

IFFIm issues second sukuk, raising US$ 200 million

IFFIm entered the Islamic finance market for the second time, raising US$ 200 million with a 3-year socially responsible investment that complies with Islamic law the sukuk was coordinated by Standard Charted Bank, working with joint lead managers Emirates NBD Capital Limited (Dubai), Maybank Kim Eng (Maybank), National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) and NCB Capital Company (NCB Capital).


October 2016

IFFIm issues US$ 500 million in 3-year floating rate Vaccine Bonds

IFFIm returns to the international US$ benchmark market, raising US$ 500 million in a transaction jointly led by Citi, Deutsche Bank and J.P. Morgan. It is IFFIm’s second floating rate offer and its fifth benchmark since 2006.


November 2017

IFFIm issues US$ 300 million in 3-year floating rate Vaccine Bonds

IFFIm issues again to the international US dollar benchmark market, raising US$ 300 million in a transaction jointly led by Citi, Crédit Agricole and Goldman Sachs International. This re-establishes IFFIm as regular borrower in the market following its US$ 500 million 3-year floating rate note issued in October 2016.


October 2018

Government of Brazil signs grant agreement for US$ 20 million in support to IFFIm

Brazil approved a grant of US$ 20 million to IFFIm. With its commitment of $1 million per year for 20 years, Brazil became the 10th donor to IFFIm overall and the second BRICS donor after South Africa.

November 2018

Gavi approved a proposal from the Kingdom of Norway to facilitate the frontloading of Norway’s support to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation (CEPI) through the issuance of Vaccine Bonds. CEPI, which is developing new vaccines for some of the world’s most dangerous infectious diseases, will draw on IFFIm’s capacity to raise short-term financing on capital markets backed by long-term contributions from donor countries. Norway and CEPI have turned to IFFIm because of its simplicity, speed of execution, cost, compliance and strong reputation among investors.


April 2019

IFFIm issues sukuk to the Islamic Development Bank

IFFIm raises US$ 50 million in a private placement sukuk transaction with the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB). The First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) acted as placement agent on the transaction. This marks IFFIm’s third sukuk, furthering IFFIm’s presence in Islamic capital markets and building awareness and support for Gavi programmes among Gulf Cooperation Council investors.

US$ 80-100 billion

Investing in Gavi’s 2016-2020 strategy has the potential to deliver US$ 80-100 billion in costs averted related to illness, such as productivity loss due to death/disability, treatment costs, caretaker productivity loss and transport costs.

Stack M et al. Estimated economic benefits during Decade of Vaccines, Health Affairs 2011

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