Ébalé (meaning “river” in Lingala) is a company formed under French law in 2019 on the initiative of Angalia art gallery.

It has been devised as an art investment fund, which buys and then sells on artworks in due course, at a price that ensures the model’s financial viability. However, Ébalé has two special features which set it apart from a simple investment fund.

Firstly, the fund solely buys works by young artists, with its core aim being to support them at the start of their careers. Secondly, it is attached to Angalia, a gallery specialising in contemporary art from DR Congo (DRC). That is why all the artists are Congolese. Angalia manages Ébalé, meaning that the gallery identifies young talented artists in DRC, and then builds up a collection of their early works on behalf of Ébalé.

Ébalé has 10 partners from diverse backgrounds. Some were mainly attracted by the artistic nature of the project, while others are keen to support the growth of Africa, and others are particularly interested in the application of impact investment principles to the art world. Impact investment does not regard financial profitability as an end in itself, but as the means of ensuring the model’s viability, with the core aim being to achieve fundamental objectives.

Once investments have been made, the partners can follow the career path of the artists and art market dynamics. They can also loan works and even buy them themselves before they are put on sale.