McDermott’s Impact Finance Group advises UNICEF and the Education Outcome Fund on setting up Ground-breaking Education Programmes in Africa and the Middle East - McDermott Will & Emery

McDermott’s Impact Finance Group advises UNICEF and the Education Outcome Fund on setting up Ground-breaking Education Programmes in Africa and the Middle East


McDermott Will & Emery jointly advised UNICEF and the Education Outcomes Fund (EOF) in relation to EOF’s work with respect to the design of EOF’s hosting as an independent hosted partnership at UNICEF’. It’s not a singular ‘outcomes program’ – there will be many programs designed and contracted by a single fund (EOF).

The Firm’s Impact Finance Group advised EOF and UNICEF in setting up a joint structure, which involved the complexities around alignment between the outcomes-based model in relation to EOF’s underlying education programs in various jurisdictions and conforming the contractual structure to the fund establishment within the composition of UNICEF.

Working towards Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4), EOF’s mission is to tackle the global learning crisis with an emphasis on early childhood development, improving the quality of free basic education and developing skills for work. Covid-19 has further amplified the learning crisis faced by millions of children across the world with school closures having the impact of reversing years of progress in education and remote learning being completely out of reach for at least 50 million students, according to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. EOF drives innovation, increases accountability and the effectiveness of current spending and also increases the effectiveness of the current spending into education primarily through results-based financing frameworks. This is a ground breaking transaction and one of the largest cross border impact finance mechanisms targeting education of children around the World and with respect to SDG 4 (Education). As a result of this important transaction, EOF now performs on a global fund platform; operating as an independent trust fund hosted by UNICEF who provide fund management, legal, procurement and administrative services to EOF.

Ranajoy Basu, partner at McDermott Will & Emery, said:

“We are delighted to have supported UNICEF and EOF through this process. The transaction will pave the way for innovative financing at scale to reach children in need of education in some of the remotest parts of the world. There hasn’t been a more critical time for organisations like EOF to use outcome funding in order to empower education providers to think laterally, meet the challenges ahead and contribute towards a sustainable solution for children’s needs so that they can thrive.”

Jared Lee, co-founder and director of programs at EOF, said:

“We are deeply committed to improving the effectiveness of aid, philanthropy and Government spending, by developing large-scale outcomes funds for education and employment. Our hosting at UNICEF is a critical step towards being able to do that, and we’re very grateful for the support from McDermott in helping navigate the legal complexities of the arrangement.”

McDermott’s team was led in London by partner Ranajoy Basu and included counsel, Priya Taneja.

Freshfield Bruckhaus Deringer also advised.

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