Why the Müller-Möhl Foundation invests in elea

elea Blog

A joint fight against absolute poverty

The elea Philanthropic Investors’ Circle consists of outstanding personalities who value entrepreneurship and philanthropy and have decided to join us in fighting absolute poverty with entrepreneurial means. One of our esteemed philanthropic investors is Carolina Müller-Möhl, who is a successful businesswoman, investor, and philanthropist, as well as the President of the Müller-Möhl Group and its foundation.

Carolina Müller-Möhl is one of the most influential female investors in Switzerland. She sits on several boards of directors and is a committed philanthropist. Her credo is: "Do good and talk about it." The Swiss opinion leader is a sought-after guest on podiums and is also quoted as an expert in the media. In addition, Carolina is an advocate and leading voice for gender parity and founded a competence hub called “taskforce4women” that promotes the compatibility of work and family to achieve equality in all aspects.

Müller-Möhl Foundation’s commitment

For more than ten years, Carolina has been implementing her sociopolitical commitment through her own foundation, the Müller-Möhl Foundation, whose thematic focus is on education, the reconciliation of work and family life, and the promotion of Switzerland as a business location. A majority of the foundation’s activities is based in Switzerland, as Carolina and her team believe that this is where their expertise and network provide the greatest leverage for sustainable change.

Since 2020, the Müller-Möhl Foundation has been investing in elea's impact portfolio, thereby complementing its own foundation’s activities in Switzerland. When selecting their investment portfolio, we took their preferences into account and, in a joint exchange, specifically chose companies that fit best with the foundation’s funding concept, such as AMAZI and Kwanza Tukule, which both benefit from a strong female leadership.

Interview with Carolina Müller-Möhl

Interview with Carolina Müller-Möhl

We invited Carolina to share with our readers her perspective on elea, impact investing, and our partnership approach.

Why do you invest in elea’s impact portfolio?

Carolina: Our involvement with elea is rather exceptional, as it is our only engagement outside of Switzerland. We were immediately convinced that we wanted to work with elea given their entrepreneurial approach to fighting absolute poverty and our shared values of integrity, fairness, and respect for others. We both believe in the responsibility that each individual has in the world, which includes their intrinsic willingness to learn and seek ways out of poverty – no matter what one’s background might be.

“Everyone is very committed to the purpose of fighting poverty.”

AMAZI addresses the lack of access to work and a stable income for women growing up and living in dire conditions in South Africa’s lowest-income areas.

How do you perceive elea as a partner?

Carolina: elea as an organization, as well as everyone whom I have met from the team, is ambitious and entrepreneurial, but also pragmatic. elea knows what it is doing, why it is doing it, and, most importantly, it walks the talk. elea’s partnership approach operates on two levels, one with us as philanthropic investors and one with the entrepreneurs whose companies elea invests in. The targets that elea sets together with its impact ventures are ambitious, and the progress achieved by these investments is monitored regularly and consists of constant dialogue with the entrepreneurs. I also really appreciate the fact that elea shares this progress with us, along with the challenges that it faces, in a transparent way during our annual meetings.

“A successful partnership is based on trust, and we trust elea fully.”

Kwanza Tukule sources products from major manufacturers, sells them at fair prices, and delivers directly to food vendors, mostly women, in low-income areas. In 2022, they expanded to supply over 6'000 food vendors and their revenues more than doubled.

What is the difference between elea and other philanthropic partners that you have?

Carolina: In my opinion, the pursuit of an entrepreneurial approach to philanthropy is more sustainably impactful than that of a traditional charity. elea is a role-model organization in impact investing from whom many organizations could learn a lot. In addition, elea avoids making its ventures dependent on it as a foundation and foresees an exit from these investments once the companies have become more established in the market and can attract non-philanthropic growth capital.

“elea sets high standards in the foundation landscape, because it supports people in becoming financially independent and self-reliant.”

The elea Philanthropic Investors’ Circle

Becoming a partner of elea and its portfolio ventures is an effective way to fight poverty with entrepreneurial means. External capital providers – such as foundations, entrepreneurially minded personalities, and families, as well as companies – are key facilitators that enable our model of impact through entrepreneurship.

Are you interested in joining our fight against absolute poverty and becoming part of our elea Philanthropic Investors’ Circle? All investments directly support our venture work: 90% is allocated to investments in impact ventures worldwide, while the remaining 10% contributes to elea’s pipeline work of finding and evaluating suitable ventures. To learn more, please reach out to us.


Author: Romy Sauer, Communications Specialist at elea Foundation for Ethics in Globalization