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The Brief’s Big Nine: Data-driven, unlocking value, low-carbon banking, economic imperatives

Greetings, ImpactAlpha readers! Many investors claim to be data-driven. Except when it comes to impact. Neither limited partners nor anybody else would let fund managers get away with saying they don’t measure the financial performance of their portfolio companies. So why do LPs give venture capitalists a pass on measuring social impact? “We have to

Will demographics, automation and inequality mean the end of the middle class?

By 2030, the familiar categories of low-, middle- and upper-income in the US may be obsolete. Instead, according to a new report from Bain & Company, an affluent 20% may separate itself from the remaining 80%, who will earn less than what would be considered a middle-class income. The report calls the coming decades-long period

Global Banks: We’re watching how you finance the low-carbon transition

The biggest banks in Europe, North America and Asia are in a global race to provide the $12 trillion in financing needed by 2030 for the historic global transition to a low-carbon economy. OK, that’s not the dominant headline out of the new report from Boston Common Asset Management, which surveyed 59 major banks about

Economist conference preview, Rise of the Rest startups, the end of the middle class?

Greetings, ImpactAlpha readers! #Featured: ImpactAlpha original A handy cheatsheet (and modest provocation) for The Economist’s annual impact investing conference. Impact investors have cheered the magazine’s interest as a British-accented signal that the new investment approach is ready for prime time. Among the weighty questions on the agenda: Can investors revive the American Dream? It will

‘Can investors revive the American Dream?’ and other weighty questions of the day

With Dennis Price It will be a welcome relief if The Economist’s second impact investment gathering in New York this week goes beyond high-minded conversation to actually mobilize the super-empowered guest list for concerted action. Impact investors have cheered The Economist’s interest as a British-accented signal that the new investment approach is ready for prime time.

Endeavor Catalyst backs Brazilian lending platform Creditas

Creditas launched in 2012 to improve Brazilians’ access to credit. Borrowers put homes and cars up as collateral for access to the lending platform’s low-interest loans. Creditas has originated $100 million in loans to date. Endeavor Catalyst backed the company’s $50 million Series C round alongside Kaszek Ventures, Quona Capital, QED Investors, International Finance Corporation

Aberdeen Standard partners with Big Issue on employment fund

The UK Equity Impact–Employment Opportunities fund will be the first equity fund for Big Issue’s social investment arm, Big Issue Invest. The partnership with Aberdeen Standard Investments will invest in publicly listed companies that create jobs that pay above minimum wage, are boosting employment in underserved areas and where a majority of staff are in the UK.