NetGuarantee, a new innovative finance facility, announces its first transaction with Zurich in North America, part of the Zurich Financial Services Group, to celebrate the upcoming World Malaria Day on April 25. This collaboration will help accelerate access to and advance the delivery of vital malaria prevention tools in Africa by six to 10 months, and shows how core business competencies and best practices can improve efficiencies in global health and save lives.

NetGuarantee, a wholly‐owned subsidiary of the non‐profit organization Malaria No More, works with a broad range of partners including the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria to speed the delivery of life‐saving mosquito nets. By offering a form of payment guarantee, NetGuarantee enables suppliers to manufacture life‐saving mosquito nets before countries receive grant funding from multilaterals. This advanced processing significantly reduces the time between grant disbursement and the delivery of mosquito nets to the recipient country—protecting millions of people in at‐risk communities more quickly than ever before.

"Introducing market‐based solutions to fight malaria, NetGuarantee offers mosquito net suppliers an unparalleled opportunity to hedge risks implicit in producing orders before African countries receive financing," noted Leah Pedersen Thomas, Director of NetGuarantee. "Such an innovative mechanism not only speeds ongoing access to mosquito nets but is crucial to prevent life threatening stock‐outs and scale protection before peak transmission seasons."

For its first transaction in Mozambique, an African country where malaria is the leading cause of death, NetGuarantee is working with Zurich in North America to offer a form of credit insurance to suppliers. The transaction makes available previously inaccessible credit insurance to suppliers of malaria mosquito nets. Such market‐based tools enable suppliers to partake in earlier manufacturing and delivery of this life‐saving commodity. Using NetGuarantee to safeguard against credit risks, a manufacturer began the production of 250,000 mosquito nets for Mozambique in January, months earlier than originally anticipated.

"This unprecedented coordination between the public and private sector is exactly what's needed in the race to save lives from malaria," said Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. "We applaud NetGuarantee's first transaction, as it will bolster our joint efforts to bring down the death toll from malaria."

The NetGuarantee model proves that innovative finance facilities can and should be applied to global health. Public‐private partnerships like NetGuarantee leverage the mechanisms of the business sector to strengthen the world’s ability to fight disease and bring new tools to the effort to end malaria deaths.

"For families in Africa, malaria is a threat they face every single day," said Scott Case, Vice Chairman of Malaria No More. "NetGuarantee leverages time‐tested financial practices in an entirely new way: getting vital tools like mosquito nets to the people who need them as quickly as possible."

The mosquito nets will arrive in Mozambique in the coming weeks. Building upon the success of this transaction, NetGuarantee aims to execute additional transactions in 2011 and continue to speed the delivery of malaria control tools to families across Africa.

About NetGuarantee
In addition to Zurich in North America, the launch of the NetGuarantee facility is made possible by a broad range of implementing partners including: the Global Fund, the Mozambique Ministry of Health, Malaria Consortium, the International Procurement Agency (IPA), Brad Herbert Associates, and Montrose Africa, as well as collateral backers from Goldman Sachs Gives and the Betsy and Jesse Fink Foundation and support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the ExxonMobil Foundation.

Learn more about the "NetGuarantee" program here.

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