Dealflow | November 10, 2021

Equitable economic growth tops agenda at Commerce Department convening

David Bank
ImpactAlpha Editor

David Bank

ImpactAlpha, November 10 — Top officials across the Biden administration committed to advance economic equity for communities of color and underrepresented groups, at the first annual Interagency Convening on Equitable Economic Growth, co-hosted by the Ford Foundation (disclosure: Ford Foundation is a sponsor of The Reconstruction on ImpactAlpha).

Discussions at the daylong gathering ranged across community investing, quality jobs, workforce training, small businesses, corporate diversity, and the power of data and disclosure to advance racial and gender equity.

“It was motivating to have the energy and interplay of public and private sector actors who care about the same issues but have different tools in their toolkits,” Ford’s Margot Brandenburg told ImpactAlpha. Some commitments: 

Private-markets ESG

A consortium of investors, including Ford, S&P Global, Hamilton Lane, and Omidyar Network, invested $21 million in Novata, a new platform to help private companies measure, collect and benchmark environment, social and governance data (see, “Consortium launches Novata to drive ESG reporting in private markets”).

Private equity firms Vistria Group, Clearlake Capital and Kohlberg & Co. also participated in the Series A financing, one of the largest for a public-benefit corporation.

Quality jobs

The Families and Workers Fund committed $25 million to champion high-quality jobs for those in lower-paying, precarious, or rapidly-changing jobs, especially people of color, young people, women and caregivers (see, and listen to, “Solving for both unemployment and labor shortages with high-quality jobs”). A “good jobs champions” group will be convened by Aspen Institute.