This category includes articles about people, firms and foundations that invest in social good by investing in social entrepreneurs, social impact or pay-for-success bonds, etc.
This category includes articles about people, firms and foundations that invest in social good by investing in social entrepreneurs, social impact or pay-for-success bonds, etc.
Gilbert Will Strengthen The GIIN’s Network Engagement, Enhance Programming, And Drive Regional Growth
Press Release – NEW YORK, November 15, 2018 – The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) today announced the appointment of Sean Gilbert as its Director of Membership. Gilbert will be responsible for overseeing the GIIN’s Membership of over 280 member organizations from across over 40 countries around the world and guide the strategic direction and growth of programming initiatives and member engagement across regions. He will be based in Washington, D.C.
“To drive meaningful progress in the advancement of impact investing, we must connect a diverse set of participants to engage in collective action and collaborative idea generation, problem-solving, and knowledge sharing,” said Amit Bouri, CEO and co-founder of the GIIN. “This is a key objective of our membership program, and Sean possesses the global experience and skills needed to unite and energize stakeholders from across sectors and geographies. He is a tremendous addition to our team.”
In his role, Gilbert will facilitate the growth of GIIN membership and expand engagement, particularly among institutional investors. In addition, he will oversee the creation and delivery of high-quality programming and other services that align with areas of need within the industry and interests of members.
Over his career, Gilbert has had extensive experience working with the finance sector around the integration of sustainability and ESG into investment processes, including the development of standards and indicators. He is uniquely poised to contribute to engagement around the GIIN’s Impact Measurement and Management (IMM) and Research teams and will engage members as such into the GIIN’s wider activities.
Gilbert comes to the GIIN from the World Resources Institute (WRI), where he was Head of Partnerships and Outreach for the NDC Partnership, leading on the global initiative to support countries to increase the flow of finance and assistance to deliver on national climate and development commitments. For over twenty years, he has worked in both the private and non-profit sectors on integrating sustainability into business and finance. Prior to his leadership at WRI, he oversaw Sustainability Advisory Services for KPMG in China, and before that was a Director at the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) in Amsterdam, where he led the development of a pioneering set of standards, which have become the most widely adopted sustainability reporting framework in the world. Gilbert began his career in Asia as a market research consultant for the chemical and environmental technology sectors.
Gilbert commented: “Impact investing is approaching an inflection point as a practice. Investors are showing an increasing interest in understanding how their portfolios relate to global challenges and contribute to solutions. There is a need for bringing the industry together behind a set of shared and consistent approaches to enable investors to embed concepts of impact into their investments and processes. The GIIN has a catalytic role to play and I am excited to join the team and to have the opportunity to work with members.”
About the Global Impact Investing Network
The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) is the global champion of impact investing, dedicated to increasing the scale and effectiveness of impact investing around the world. Impact investments are investments made with the intention to generate positive, measurable social and environmental impact alongside a financial return. Impact investments can be made in both emerging and developed markets and target a range of returns from below market to market rate, depending upon investors’ objectives. The GIIN builds critical infrastructure and supports activities, education, and research that help accelerate the development of a coherent impact investing industry. For more information, please visit www.thegiin.org.
New platform helps a growing segment of investors make good impact investments;
Capital raise will enable TechSoup to power up social impact with new initiatives to help organizations improve lives through the use of technology.
Press Release – SAN FRANCISCO, November 14, 2018 – Today, Canadian-based Social Venture Connexion (SVX) officially launched its investment platform in the U.S. SVX is a platform offering debt and equity investment opportunities in high impact companies, organizations and funds that can deliver positive social and environmental impact alongside financial return.
Using the innovative SVX impact investment platform, tech nonprofit TechSoup intends to raise $11.5 million through a Direct Public Offering (DPO). TechSoup connects civil society organizations and changemakers around the world to the resources they need to design and implement technology solutions for a more equitable planet.
The TechSoup DPO, which includes three tiers of debt securities investments, marks the first time the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has qualified a nonprofit to raise funds nationally through a Regulation A+ / Tier 2 offering. With investment minimums as low as $50, it is uniquely structured to engage with TechSoup’s community, including the nonprofits they serve, the technology companies they support, and those who have supported TechSoup for 30 years.
SVX.US is being launched in collaboration with SVX Canada, Cutting Edge Capital, and Bequia Securities, a U.S. SEC registered broker dealer and member of FINRA/SIPC. For more information on TechSoup’s offering and SVX.US services, please visit https://svx.us.com/.
“SVX is delighted to collaborate across borders by starting up in the U.S. impact investing market with TechSoup’s offering. This opportunity is open to a growing group of investors who are increasingly interested in aligning their investments with their values, from foundations to family offices to the general public. We are excited to make impact investing accessible to all investors from Wall Street to Main Street.”
Adam Spence, Founder and Director, SVX Canada
“Launching the SVX.US platform with TechSoup is the perfect start for us. TechSoup has demonstrated significant measurable impact for years and has been a global leader putting social values first. This offering allows us to signal to Investors that only highly curated issuers will be added to our platform, while applying traditional approaches to due diligence and suitability via Bequia’s own commitment to this socially-responsible space.”
John Katovich, Principal at Bequia Securities and Co-Founder, SVX.US
“It was essential to us to shape an impact investment that was inclusive, giving as many of our stakeholders as possible an opportunity to engage and influence our future. The DPO and SVX as our investment platform make it possible for us to democratize access to a unique impact investment that can have meaningful social returns for our community of stakeholders as well as financial returns. This funding will help us to realize five long-term strategic initiatives that enable TechSoup to rapidly bring new services to nonprofit and philanthropic communities and continue to generate significant social impact.”
Rebecca Masisak, CEO, TechSoup
Partnering with SVX Canada and Cutting Edge Capital, and utilizing the broker dealer expertise of Bequia Securities, SVX.US improves access across borders, enhances shared capacity, technology, and knowledge, and creates a single access point for all impact investors and issuers. The platform focuses on social and environmental criteria and delivers tailored programming to support the unique needs of the entire marketplace. Socially motivated investors can rely on the platform to find curated company and fund offerings that value employment, governance and stakeholder engagement, equal to sound and responsible business practices. For more information, please visit https://svx.us.com/.
TechSoup provides the transformative technology solutions, the digital platforms, and the in-person experiences that enable people to work together toward a more equitable world. With 70 partner NGOs around the world, TechSoup manages the only global philanthropy program that brings together more than 100 tech companies to provide technology donations to NGOs everywhere. TechSoup’s data and validation services enable companies, foundations, and governments to connect their philanthropic resources with vetted NGOs around the world. In the past 30 years, TechSoup has reached 1.06 million NGOs and distributed technology products and grants valued at more than $11.1 billion. https://www.techsoup.org/
About SVX Canada
SVX is an impact investing platform for ventures, funds, and investors seeking social and/or environmental impact alongside the potential for financial return. We provide a single access point for raising capital and making investments. We work across sectors including cleantech, health, education, food, and social inclusion to help enterprises raise capital so they can focus on their business. We work with all investors, from foundations and family offices to everyday investors, to help them make good impact investments through education, advice, transaction support, and management. SVX is powered by MaRS Discovery District in collaboration with the TMX Group Inc. and the Government of Ontario. SVX is a nonprofit organization based in Canada registered with local securities regulators as an Exempt Market Dealer (EMD), with a network of platform partners in the US and Mexico. For more information, please visit www.svx.ca.
Press Release – Zurich, 14 November 2018 – BlueOrchard Finance Ltd (“BlueOrchard”), a leading Swiss-based impact investment manager, released today a white paper, discussing ways to mobilize private capital at scale in order to close the SDGs investment gap. Ending poverty, reducing inequalities and fighting the effects of climate change requires a multi-dimensional approach, and can only be achieved by ad-dressing interrelated factors, including inclusive growth, education, food security, health, and access to basic services and infrastructure.
The BlueOrchard Impact Summit 2018, held in Pontresina, Switzerland, on October 3-4, 2018, was cen-tred around the key topic “Closing the Gap”. The summit provided a diverse range of high calibre stake-holders with the opportunity to advance the discussion about how to achieve the Sustainable Develop-ment Goals (SDGs). The white paper synthesizes the experience, expertise, and contributions of the summit’s speakers and attendees and reflects on identified areas where all stakeholders can work to-gether to contribute to closing the SDGs’ $2.5 trillion investment gap in developing countries. The white paper is aimed at all participants of the summit as well as everyone who is interested in closing the SDGs investment gap.
Guest contributions from Tadashi Maeda, Governor and Representative Director, Japan Bank for Inter-national Cooperation (“Activating the Potential of Women in Emerging Markets”), Stephanie J. Miller, Director of Western Europe, IFC, World Bank Group (“Tackling Global Warming by Creating Markets for Climate Business”), Christophe Nuttall, Executive Director, R20 Regions of Climate Action (“Taking the Sub-national Level in Emerging Markets into Account”) and Marco Bizzozero, Head of Group Wealth Management, UniCredit (“How Wealth Management Can Help Mobilize Private Capital for Public Good”) complete the white paper.
Peter A. Fanconi, BlueOrchard’s Chairman said: “BlueOrchard has taken the responsibility to actively contribute to achieving the ambitious goals set out in the SDGs and the Paris Agreement. We firmly be-lieve that the private sector has both the responsibility and the strength to make a positive impact in this world. If we all walk this path together, we will be able to make an impact in this world.”
“We are only at the beginning of a long journey which we started with the summit. This white paper continues this journey by entering us into a vital debate and exchange among all stakeholders to identify solutions to end poverty, foster peace and prosperity, and protect the planet”, said Patrick Scheurle, CEO of BlueOrchard.
To download a copy of the white paper, please visit: http://www.blueorchard.com/blueorchard-impact-summit-white-paper-2018/
About BlueOrchard Finance Ltd
BlueOrchard is a leading global impact investment manager. The firm is dedicated to fostering inclusive and climate-smart growth, while providing attractive returns for investors. BlueOrchard was founded in 2001, by initiative of the UN, as the world’s first commer-cial manager of microfinance debt investments. Today, BlueOrchard provides investors around the world with premium investment solutions, including credit, private equity, and sustainable infrastructure. Being an expert in innovative blended finance mandates, the firm is a trusted partner of leading global development finance institutions. With a major global presence and offices on four continents, BlueOrchard has invested to date more than USD 5bn across 80 emerging and frontier markets, enabling tangible social and environ-mental impact. BlueOrchard is a licensed Swiss asset manager of collective investment schemes authorized by FINMA. Its Luxembourg entity, BlueOrchard Asset Management S.A., is a licensed UCITS management company as well as a licensed alternative investment fund manager (AIFM) authorized by CSSF. For additional information, please visit: www.blueorchard.com.
National Philanthropic Trust’s 12th annual industry report reveals tax reform, strong economy, and heightened interest in philanthropy contribute to eight years of DAF impact growth; number of accounts increase substantially.
Press Release – JENKINTOWN, PA – November 13, 2018 – The 2018 Donor-Advised Fund Report, the most comprehensive data on donor-advised funds (DAFs) in the U.S., reveals grants from DAFs to qualified charities grew 19.9 percent to a record $19.08 billion, increasing the payout rate to 22.1 percent. DAFs remain the fastest growing giving vehicle in the U.S., with the number of accounts surging 60.2 percent to 463,622.
The 12th annual Donor-Advised Fund Report finds growth in every key philanthropic benchmark with DAFs representing 10.2 percent of all individual giving in the U.S. Total assets available for grantmaking increased 27.3 percent year-over-year to $110.01 billion. Contributions to DAF accounts, every dollar destined for charities, grew 16.5 percent to $29.23 billion. National Philanthropic Trust (NPT), the largest national independent donor-advised fund sponsor in the US, publishes the Donor-Advised Fund Report annually.
“Growth in donor-advised funds reflects the charitable instinct of Americans, who are among the most generous donors in the world,” said Eileen Heisman, President and CEO of National Philanthropic Trust. “Tax reform drove many to ‘pre-fund’ their philanthropy in 2017 when the value of their tax deduction could be higher. A booming stock market and a tense political climate spurred generosity and helped donors support the values and causes they embrace.”
Key Report Findings
National Philanthropic Trust’s 12th annual Donor-Advised Fund Report identified growth in all key metrics for the eighth consecutive year.
“Growth in grants from DAFs to charities—large and small—have outpaced contributions for four out of the last five years,” said Heisman. “The 2016 to 2017 period saw the fastest rate of growth in DAF grantmaking in several years. We predict that grants from DAFs to charities will exceed $20 billion in 2018.”
Heisman continued, “We believe that DAF donors give more and are fully committed to philanthropy. To attract DAF dollars, charities should communicate their mission to prospective donors with impactful stories and innovative fundraising tactics.”
For the first time, the Donor-Advised Fund Report includes a brief analysis of the types of assets contributed to donor-advised funds. The limited data set represents 61.5 percent of the total contributions in 2017. Of those contributions, approximately 60 percent were non-cash assets.
“The vast majority of non-cash asset contributions are publicly-traded securities, but we also see donors turning their business interests, real estate, fine art and jewelry into charitable capital,” said Heisman. “We saw an increase in these illiquid asset contributions six years ago. DAFs make it easier for donors to turn these assets into charitable grants for the organizations that mean most to them. We anticipate contributions of illiquid assets will continue to increase in the coming years.”
First established nearly 100 years ago, DAFs have evolved into an important giving vehicle for donors and steady funding source for charities. The Next Generation is adopting them because of their flexibility and simplicity.
“We are in the midst of a transformative era in the history of philanthropy,” said Heisman. “The surge in number of individual DAFs reflects donors’ interest in being active and strategic with their philanthropy. Many DAFs offer the opportunity to align their charitable capital with their financial goals and personal values. For example, donors are starting to choose impact investments for their DAF contributions to double the impact of their philanthropy.”
Continued Heisman, “We are seeing emerging, innovative models that capitalize on the efficiency and flexibility of DAFs, including crowdfunding and workplace giving. This evolution of giving means new opportunity for donors and charities alike.”
National Philanthropic Trust’s Donor-Advised Fund Report has been published annually as a public service since 2006. It primarily uses data from IRS Form 990 filings to provide the most up-to-date and reliable analysis of the DAF market. The 2018 report examined 1,002 charitable organizations that sponsor donor-advised funds, including national charities, community foundations and other sponsoring charities. A glossary of terms can be found here.
About National Philanthropic Trust
NPT is the largest national independent donor-advised fund sponsor and has raised $11.3 billion in charitable contributions. NPT currently manages $6.7 billion in charitable assets and has made more than 230,000 grants exceeding $5.6 billion to charities around the world. NPT ranks among the largest grantmaking institutions in the US. NPT published HistoryofGiving.org, the most comprehensive narrative about the past 500 years of philanthropy, including rarely accessed images, videos and documents. More at NPTrust.org.
Press Release – LONDON, 13 NOVEMBER 2018 – A first-of-its-kind “Halal Stock Screener” app, that allows investors to determine if an equity is Shari’ah compliant, has been launched by Wahed Invest.
The app’s launch means that for the first time, ethical and faith-based investors are able to look beyond inflexible mutual funds and expensive institutional Shari’ah certifications. This technology removes yet another barrier to faith-based investing, following research conducted earlier this year that showed that over 50% of British Muslims feel excluded from mainstream financial services providers.  The Halal Stock Screener aims to open up Halal investing to a wider audience, including Britain’s nearly three million Muslims, as well as those who wish to invest ethically.
The Halal Stock Screener allows users to search over 50,000 stocks globally and request an analysis to see if they are compliant and ethical in nature, according to the Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI). The analysis uses real-time data supplied by Thomson Reuters and provides free information, including a company overview, stock pricing, financial ratios, company size, price per share data and estimates, as well as an automated quantitative Halal analysis from leading financial organisations.
Halal investing principles are assured by screening stocks for tobacco, alcohol, firearms, gambling, adult entertainment, non-compliant foods, usurious institutions, excess debt, excess interest and other concerning financial ratios. Stocks are also screened by Wahed Invest’s experts for the presence of interest, or Riba, and all other impermissible sources of income. The app is available to download for free on both Google Play and the Apple App store.
The app also includes a Zakat calculator, allowing users to accurately determine their Zakat annual contribution, which entails donating a portion of one’s wealth to those in need. Zakat is one of the Five Pillars of Islam.
Junaid Wahedna, Chief Executive Officer at Wahed Invest, said: “With thousands of potential stocks available, it can seem like an impossible task for people to find out if they are investing ethically. The new Halal Stock Screener delivers a fast and easy way to determine if a stock meets a user’s ethical standards. This is a valuable tool for anyone who wishes to invest ethically, especially Muslims who seek to ensure that their investments are Halal.”
Additionally, the Halal Stock Screener app can provide users with an official qualitative Shari’ah certification, and an SRI review of the ethical policies on any stock selected, for £9.99 per stock. The qualitative screening determines compliance based AAOIFI methodology.
Wahed Invest launched the UK’s first Halal online investment platform in August 2018, giving investors access to a globally diversified portfolio of ethically responsible stocks, Islamic bonds and gold for the first time. The company has raised over £12m in funding since inception and is valued at over £75m. Following a successful roll-out in the US and the UK, it will continue expanding into the Gulf Corporation Council (GCC) and ASEAN markets.
All securities undergo a rigorous screening process in which the Ethical Review Board and Wahed’s investment management partners work together to tailor portfolios to provide attractive investment returns, which are fully compliant. Wahed Invest is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority.
 ‘Wahed Invest survey’ July 2018.
Press Release – Oakland, California—Nov. 13—As You Sow is gearing up to release its fifth Invest Your Values screening tool, Gender Equality Funds, on Nov. 13. Gender Equality Funds is a free, online tool that enables individual and institutional investors to apply a gender lens to mutual fund and ETF investments.
Gender Equality Funds screens the specific holdings of about 5,000 of the most commonly-held U.S. mutual funds—including financial giants like Vanguard, BlackRock, and State Street—against a database detailing individual company performance on 12 key gender equality performance indicators. These 12 indicators measure policies that demonstrate a commitment to gender diversity and gender balance in the overall leadership, management, and workforce of companies, combining into an overall gender equality portfolio score for each mutual fund.
This transparency gives investors, for the first time, the ability to apply a gender lens in evaluating mutual funds. It encourages fund managers to construct and offer investment vehicles that are sympathetic to gender parity, ultimately exerting market pressure on companies to improve their performance on gender issues.
“This tool could not be coming out at a better time,” Andrew Behar, CEO of As You Sow, said. “Women comprise 47 percent of the workforce, but only 4.8 percent of S&P 500 companies have female CEOs. The new tool empowers investors to see what is hidden within the mutual funds that comprise the bulk of their retirement savings and 401(k) plans. The first step is to know what you own — then you can use the power of your capital to invest in companies that have policies and practices that promote gender equality. We expect this tool to unleash a tsunami of change in the way women are treated in the workforce.”
Gender Equality Funds enables investors to align their investment with their values. It reveals which mutual funds are investing in the companies that lead the field in terms of gender balance and equality. Investors can easily search the Gender Equality Funds database to see how specific funds are scored, find responsible options that track leading companies in terms of gender equality, and compare financial returns.
“I am thrilled to see As You Sow launching this gender lens tool,” Kristin Hull, founder and CEO of Nia Impact Capital, said. “We at Nia know the benefit to companies and investors of being gender smart. My hope is that advisors and investors across the country will utilize this new way to assess mutual funds.”
Gender Equality Funds sources mutual fund holdings data from Morningstar and company-specific gender data from Equileap, the leading organization providing data and insights on gender equality in the corporate sector. With Gender Equality Funds, you’ll see at a glance whether mutual funds are investing in companies that are prioritizing gender equality.
“Impact investing should not be limited to private deals or customized public portfolios,” Ruth Shaber, founder and president of Tara Health Foundation, said. “The bulk of the wealth in this country is invested in mutual funds. If we want to democratize access to impact investing, we need to create tools for everyone, from individuals with 401(k)s to institutional investors with billions of dollars under management. The Gender Equality Funds tool allows anyone to apply a gender lens to their investments.”
Press Release – Washington D.C. (Nov 05, 2018) – Ullico Inc. today announced that it has agreed to invest in a portfolio of over 70 solar and wind power generation projects located all over the United States and owned by affiliates of Alberta Investment Management Corporation (“AIMCo”) and The AES Corporation (“AES”), who will retain a majority stake in the portfolio. The wind and solar farms are managed by FTP Power (“sPower”) and are contracted to sell power, capacity and renewable energy to investment-grade off-takers under long-term agreements. The transaction is expected to close shortly following approval by FERC.
“The investment substantially scales up Ullico’s footprint in renewable energy generation assets across North America while building a partnership with a fully integrated renewable platform as well as two like-minded investors”, said Rohit Syal, head of acquisitions for Ullico’s infrastructure business.
“Through this investment, Ullico demonstrates its commitment to projects that provide clean, low-cost energy across America,” said Edward M. Smith, President and CEO of Ullico Inc.
An affiliate of sPower will serve as the asset manager for all the projects along with conducting operations and maintenance for the solar projects. The projects’ wind turbines will be maintained under long-term agreements with original equipment manufacturer, General Electric.
“Ullico is known for bringing together expert resources and partners to better meet the needs of institutional and tax-exempt investors. This investment is another example of how our clients and their advisers benefit from the support of a dedicated team of professionals,” says Joe Linehan, President of Ullico Investment Advisors.
The portfolio is Ullico’s fifth investment in renewable energy assets. In 2013, Ullico invested in the 69 MWac Kawailoa Wind Farm in Hawaii. Subsequently in 2017, Ullico invested in a 921 MWac portfolio of wind and solar generation projects spread across the US followed by a similar investment earlier this year in a 642 MWac portfolio of US wind and solar generation projects. Finally, in August 2018, Ullico acquired a portfolio of four solar generation projects totaling 38.5 MWac located in Ontario, Canada.
“The composition of the portfolio naturally hedges geographic and resource-related risk, offering long-term stable cash flows that fit with Ullico’s infrastructure fund objectives,” said Jeff Murphy, portfolio manager for Ullico’s infrastructure business. “As our first investment with sPower, we are pleased to grow our relationships with valued partners in the renewable energy sector, alongside D.E. Shaw Renewable Investments.”
Ullico Inc., through its infrastructure business, currently has investments in the water, waste water, electricity transmission, power generation, and transportation sectors and is exploring opportunities in all core sectors.
Barclays acted as financial advisor and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP acted as legal advisor to sPower. Norton Rose Fulbright acted as legal advisor to Ullico.
For more than 90 years, Ullico, the only labor-owned insurance and investment company, has been a proud partner of the labor movement, keeping union families safe and secure. From insurance products that protect union members, leaders and employers, to investments in building projects that have created thousands of union jobs, our customers continue to trust us with protecting their families, employees and investments. The Ullico Inc. family of companies includes The Union Labor Life Insurance Company; Ullico Casualty Group, LLC.; Ullico Investment Company, LLC (Member FINRA/SIPC).; and Ullico Investment Advisors, Inc. For additional information, visit www.ullico.com.
Press Release – SAN FRANCISCO – Oct. 30, 2018 – Gender Lens Investing (GLI) continued to grow strongly in the 12 months ended June 30, 2018, rising 85% to a record $2.4 billion, according to analysis by Veris Wealth Partners, an impact wealth management firm.
The number of explicitly gender lens strategies holding publicly traded securities also continued to increase. In 2014, Veris identified eight investing vehicles. As of mid-year 2018, the number had more than quadrupled to 35.
“The growth of Gender Lens Investing is one of the most positive developments in a year overshadowed by the gender pay gap, lack of women on boards and sexual harassment scandals,” said Patricia Farrar-Rivas, CEO of Veris Wealth Partners. “GLI is one of the best opportunities to mobilize capital and remedy social issues we need to put behind us.”
Among the key findings in the 20-page report:
Click here to download the full analysis.
About Veris Wealth Partners
Veris Wealth Partners, LLC is impact wealth management firm. Our team believes that superior investment performance and positive impact are complementary parts of a holistic investment strategy. Based in San Francisco, Veris has offices in New York, Portsmouth, and Boulder. For information, call 415.815.0580, or visit www.veriswp.com.
Press Release – October 30, 2018 10:00 AM Gulf Standard Time – DUBAI—A group of emerging markets-based investors have today announced the launch of Falcon Network, an angel investment network targeting the growing entrepreneurial ecosystems emerging in key growth markets and cities such as Dubai, Istanbul, Kuala Lumpur, Lahore, and Jakarta, amongst others.
Launched at the sidelines of the 4th Global Islamic Economy Summit, an international forum held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the Network includes senior executives working in both the public and private sector across the Middle East, South and Southeast Asia. Some highlights include: Talal Yassine, Managing Director, Crescent Wealth; Junaid Wahedna, Founder, Wahed Invest; Nida Raza, Head of Investment Banking, Bank of Khartoum International; Zohaib Patel, Managing Director, Gulf Bridge Capital; Ashar Nazim, CEO, Waqfe; Dr. Sayd Farook, Vice Chairman, Board of Trustees, Responsible Finance and Investment Foundation (RFI Foundation).
Falcon Network members have committed to investing a minimum of USD 50,000 within the next two years. The Network has already established strategic partnerships with business incubators and accelerators in its target markets to source investment opportunities.
The Network’s initial focus will be on regions where funding for impact driven start-ups is limited including Cairo, Dubai, Istanbul, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Lahore and Lagos amongst others. Ticket sizes will vary but initially proposals under USD 500,000 will be considered. The startups applying to join the Network must have at least reached Proof-of-Concept level maturity. The Network will remain sector agnostic. For the first round, start-up can apply from December 1st 2018 onwards.
Rachid Ouaich, Co-founder of the Network and Co-founder, ConexCap said, “Establishing a business, especially in emerging markets, requires exceptional discipline and determination. I have witnessed many entrepreneurs fail due to a lack of guidance and the challenge of fundraising. The launch of the Network is exciting news – not only does this initiative match strategic capital with high impact investment opportunities, but also provide much-needed mentorship to budding entrepreneurs.”
Peter Gould, Co-founder of the Network and Design Executive Officer, Zileej added, ”We established the Network for the new generation of tech-savvy entrepreneurs, emerging in cities such as Cairo, Dubai, Jeddah, and Jakarta that are creating ventures that seek to not only generate strong financial returns, but also solve pressing societal problems. There is a clear need in these regions to connect impact-focused individual investors with purpose-driven entrepreneurs. This is what we hope to achieve.”
About The Falcon Network
The Falcon Network is a group of Angel Investors focused on investing in impact driven entrepreneurs from high growth markets. With more than 40 investors, the Network is truly global. Our investors have significant experience investing in and working with impact driven startups – providing not only capital but also vital strategic advice.
Press Release – Bethesda, MD, October 30, 2018 – MicroVest, a global impact investing asset management firm with $368 AUM, today announced the closing of a $20 million, 5-year revolving credit facility with MetLife Investment Management to provide a redemption line to their flagship impact investment fund. The credit facility will serve as a secondary source of liquidity for Limited Partners. The partnership will enable both organizations to increase their commitment to deep impact through financial inclusion. This investment represents MetLife Investment Management’s largest community investment to date.
The credit line enables MicroVest to better manage liquidity of the fund to deploy more capital, more quickly, to the places that need it the most. Per MicroVest’s stated mission, these are often microfinance institutions in emerging and frontier markets that have few other means of accessing capital to promote financial inclusion within their markets.
“Having this facility, and this partnership, with such a well-regarded financial inclusion leader, will hopefully prove catalytic as we seek to grow MicroVest’s lending footprint across emerging markets, providing appropriately priced capital to financial institutions serving the underbanked,” said Gil Crawford, CEO of MicroVest. “Our rigorous and time-tested due diligence process and 15-year track record of extending financial inclusion to underserved markets fits perfectly with MetLife Investment Management’s commitment to the space. This partnership will spur deep impact designed to transform the financial future for so many across the globe.”
Matt Sheedy, Director of Responsible Investment Strategies at MetLife Investment Management, said, “Expanding financial inclusion is one of MetLife’s highest priorities, so we’re pleased to be able to support MicroVest with financing that will accelerate the growth of their investment fund and enable more capital flow to high-impact microfinance institutions globally.”
About MicroVest Capital Management, LLC
MicroVest Capital Management is a SEC-registered asset management firm offering global impact investment opportunities for over 15 years. MicroVest promotes financial inclusion by investing in responsible financial institutions that serve underbanked people and businesses. Since 2003, MicroVest has demonstrated that investing in its funds is purposeful and profitable. The firm has disbursed over $1 billion to more than 200 financial institutions in over 60 countries. As of June 2018, MicroVest manages $368 million across all its funds.