Investment giant BlackRock announced today plans to develop strategies to mobilize capital in support of economic opportunities for women as part of a new agreement with UN Women, the UN’s entity dedicated to gender equality and women empowerment.

Under the new agreement, BlackRock and UN Women will work together on the promotion of gender lens investing, which allocates capital and aligns investment strategies and products to contribute to women’s empowerment objectives. BlackRock will develop strategies to mobilize capital in support of economic opportunities for women, and UN Women serve as a knowledge partner, collaborating on data and research.

Anita Bhatia, Deputy Executive Director of UN Women, said:

 “UN Women’s mission is to achieve a world in which all women and girls can exercise their basic human rights and can unlock their full economic and social potential. Achieving gender equality is at the heart of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and requires strong public-private partnerships that will direct greater flows of financing towards gender equality objectives.”

BlackRock stated that it will launch an initial set of funds over the coming quarters across its institutional and wealth channels and will aim to invest across a broad array of asset classes, regions, and investment styles, utilizing a “dual bottom line” investment thesis supporting positive real-world outcomes, while delivering attractive, risk-adjusted returns for investors.

Going forward, the two organizations plan to engage the broader ecosystem of public and private sector organizations focused on gender equality, strengthen data collaboration and research, and continue to explore opportunities for collaboration and promotion of solutions to improve the lives of women and girls.

Isabelle Mateos y Lago, Global Head of the Official Institutions Group at BlackRock, said:

“We are excited to partner with UN Women, a global champion for women’s empowerment, to help scale the nascent field of gender-lens investing. We believe this partnership will help meet the growing appetite of asset owners around the world to focus more on the “S” pillar of ESG and their growing interest in investing for positive real-world outcomes alongside competitive financial returns.”