Key Figures

By year end 2020, Norfund had committed investments totaling 24,923 million NOK in 163 projects. Almost half of the portfolio is invested in clean energy projects.


total committed


Committed in 2020


Allocated from owner in 2020

Norfund’s yearly investment activity has increased significantly since inception.

Providing equity capital is Norfund’s preferred instrument, strengthening investment companies’ capital structure and enabling Norfund to take a role as an active owner.

Priority Geographical regions

According to Norfund’s strategy, more than 50% of our investments are in Sub-Sharan Africa.

Total portfolio per region 2020 (MNOK)

Four investment areas

Norfund prioritizes investments to four investment areas; Clean Energy, Financial Institutions, Scalable Enterprises and Green Infrastucture. While almost half the portfolio was invested in Clean Energy by the end of 2019, no investments were committed in Green Infrastucture as this is a brand new investment area.

Committed Portfolio per Investment Area (by end 2019)

Priority to Least Developed Countries (LDCs)

The need for investments is high in Least Developed Countries due to the scarcity of capital available in these markets. As of end 2020, 40% of all investments were in Least Developed Countries.


Total Portfolio in Least Developed Countries

High Share of Greenfield Investments

Employing capital to new physical facilities, power plants, startups and first generation funds are classified as greenfield investments. Greenfield investments often have high risk but may be particularly important to development. Financing greenfields can be extremely challenging in developing countries.


Total portfolio in greenfield

Priority to equity

Access to equity is particularly important to companies in developing countries. Providing equity is Norfund’s preferred instrument, strengthening investees’ capital structure and enabling Norfund to take a role as an active strategic owner.

Committed portfolio by Instrument (by December 2019)


As of end 2020, since inception, Norfund's Internal Rate of Return (IRR) expressed in investment currency, was 5.9%. When calculated in Norwegian kroner, the IRR for this period was 9.1%.


IRR since inception (Investment Currency)


IRR since inception (NOK)

Internal Rate of Return (IRR) in investment currency

Since inception
Clean Energy7.0772002-9-4121011
Financial Institutions7.073681264969
Scalable Enterprises-Direct-3.63-54-5-4-10-4-1027
Scalable Enterprises - Funds1.4-7-14-4-20-3129310

In 2019, Norfund’s Clean Energy portfolio had an IRR in investment currency of 7.4 per cent. This followed a similarly strong performance in 2018. Norfund received a dividend from SN Power of 807 MNOK. Globeleq’s performance was satisfactory and the commissioning of multiple Scatec Solar projects had a positive impact on the overall result.

Our investments in Financial Institutions performed well in 2019, with an IRR of 7.1 per cent in investment currency. This result was notably stronger than the IRR of 3.3 per cent in 2018. This performance was driven in large part by improvements in the investment portfolio of ARISE, by NMI’s continued strong performance, and by value increases in multiple investments in our Central American portfolio. The IRR in this sector, since inception, is 7.0 per cent.

The IRR of our portfolio in Scalable Enterprises – Funds improved from -14.4 per cent in 2018 to -7.4 in 2019. The funds portfolio experienced downward valuation pressure and challenging exit markets. Especially our SME-funds in Angola had a troublesome year. Also in 2019 we have negative impact on the portfolio formerly managed by Aureos as a consequence of the Abraaj fraud scandal.

The Scalable Enterprises – Agriculture & Manufacturing portfolio had an IRR of 3.3 per cent in 2019, measured in investment currency. This is a strong performance compared to 2018, which saw an IRR of -5 per cent, and compared to a return of -3.6 per cent since inception. Overall, the portfolio’s IRR performance in 2019 was solid, considering the challenging and high-risk nature of this sector. The portfolio results were also boosted by successful exits from two tourism companies.

The realised values from exits from all above sectors will be reinvested in new investments that exhibit high development impact potential.