Rhino Impact
Zsl Logo Conservation Alpha

Rhino Impact Investment Project

Conservation Alpha is contracted as the Performance Manager (PM) for the Rhino Impact Bond (RIB), the world’s first Conservation Impact Bond. The RIB transfers the risk of funding conservation from donors (outcome payers) to impact investors by linking conservation impact to financial performance. We work with five sites, who are collectively responsible for managing 12% of the world’s black rhino, to develop 5-year rhino management strategies designed to deliver on ambitious but achievable population growth targets. Impact investors pay upfront for the implementation of these strategies, with “outcome payers” committing at the outset to reimburse investors their capital plus a coupon if the RIB Target is achieved and independently verified. The RIB aims to be a precedent-setting model for outcomes-driven conservation to be scaled into the future.

Given the importance of outcomes which underpin the success of these products, a fundamental role of the PM is to ensure outcomes can be measured and verified to meet auditable standards. The PM role provides technical conservation advice for the RIB Finance Manager (Conservation Capital), representing investors’ and outcome payers’ interests. In the same way a fund manager takes fiduciary duty for investments on behalf of clients, the PM assesses and approves conservation decisions, working with an Investment Committee who provide governance oversight. The PM needs to ensure there is a clear and effective conservation strategy to guide investment decisions, focused on delivering the desired impact, while negating risks to conservation performance. This includes assessing whether partner sites have the capability to deliver the strategy efficiently to achieve the desired impact.

Implementation of the Rhino Impact Investment Project is led by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL). The Project is funded by the Global Environment Facility, the UK Government through the IWT Challenge Fund, The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and ZSL. The United Nations Development Programme is the implementing Agency of the GEF.

Donor Graphic

National Geographic Society website

Last wild places

National Geographic Society’s Last Wild Places contracted Conservation Alpha to design an impact framework and identify ecological and socio-economic indicators of protected area success. To maximise the effectiveness of their funding, NGS want to measure the impact of their conservation investments across a broad portfolio of protected areas.


Ibis Consulting Logo Partner

Ibis Consulting

Ibis Consulting is a leading African sustainability consultancy that helps companies unlock value by improving their environmental and social performance. Ibis provides a unique combination of executive management and on-the-ground expertise supported by extensive experience working with multinational companies and local clients across Africa. Ibis employs over 30 staff based in offices in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Nairobi and has undertaken over 120 projects in the last 12 months for DFIs, PE firms, banks, impact funds and other multi-national clients. This experience closely aligns with many of the core competencies expected of the performance manager role: a depth of experience working with global finance clients in Africa (including various impact funds); a track record of developing fund level environmental, social and governance management systems to monitor and report on the performance of underlying portfolio investments; an experience working across a broad range of investment sectors, including food & agriculture, infrastructure, healthcare, education and housing, renewable energy, tourism and hospitality, and conservation.

Conservation Capital Logo Partner

Conservation Capital

Conservation Capital, a leading specialist practitioner in the field of conservation enterprise and related conservation investment financing, is the Finance Manager of the RII Financing Mechanism. With operating hubs in the UK, South Africa and Kenya, Conservation Capital has helped mobilise and structure more than US$220 million of finance into enterprise driven conservation projects across more than 25 countries – primarily in Africa and Europe.