Multi-donor funds emerge as a creative architecture for collaborative, catalytic capital. Heading for Change has one. So does Upstart Co-Lab. Unlock Ownership is launching its own. Multi-donor funds built on top of donor-advised funds “can pursue deep impact investing fused with philanthropy, quickly, affordably and in a manner that supports a high degree of flexible design and collaboration,” ImpactAssets’ Tim Freundlich writes in a guest post on ImpactAlpha. The $3 billion asset manager now supports three dozen multi-donor funds and adds roughly one new initiative per month.
Dealflow: The Transition
AtmosZero raises $21 million for zero-carbon industrial boilers. Coal- and gas-fired boilers have generated steam power and heat for buildings and industrial processes since the Industrial Revolution. AtmosZero, based in Fort Collins, Colo., has built an electric boiler that uses heat pump technology to turn heat from the air into high-temperature steam. AtmosZero touts maintenance savings, since electric boilers don’t require combustion inspections. The modular design of the company’s “Boiler 2.0” makes it “a scalable, drop-in replacement product rather than complex and expensive customized projects,” said AtmosZero’s Addison Stark.
Signals: State of the Field
Impact investing at a crossroads. “First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win.” Mahatma Gandhi never said it, but the truism does describe the arc of many movements for change. But nothing is inevitable. “Impact investing is at a crossroads,” Fran Seegull of the US Impact Investing Alliance writes in her annual letter on the state of the field. At stake: “Its ability to generate innovative solutions at scale to the world’s greatest challenges.” Seegull calls for accountability, collaboration and system-level thinking about systemic crises like climate change and inequality (the Alliance sponsors ImpactAlpha’s Policy Corner).
Agents of Impact: Follow the Talent
Shannon Mullins, a former sustainability and climate change manager at Deloitte, joins The Predistribution Initiative as head of special projects… Ilona Limonta-Volkova, previously with the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, joins TruStage Ventures as an investor… UBS Wealth Management’s Santi Miller has been seconded to Ownership Works through October.
Editor’s note: This guest post is sponsored by Impact Ventures by J&J Foundation, which supports ImpactAlpha’s Investing in Health coverage. In partnership with Impact Ventures, ImpactAlpha is exploring the …