Agents of Impact | May 24, 2019

Follow the Talent: Agents of Impact Special Report for May. 24

Dennis Price
ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

Greetings, Agents of Impact!

Welcome to ImpactAlpha’s weekly “follow the talent” roundup of impact investing career moves, job openings, events and opportunities. Help the growing ImpactAlpha community follow your talent: Send job moves, mandates, event announcements and other news to [email protected].

– Dennis Price, editorial director

Agents of Impact

Climate shareholders. The proxy season is in full swing and the results on 75 climate-related resolutions are… mixed. This week’s Agents of Impact are the climate-smart asset owners, asset managers, proxy advisory services, investor networks, shareholder activists and engaged employees and citizens engaging corporate managers through their ownership. Among asset owners, the $210 billion New York State Common Retirement Fund and the $10.5 billion Church of England are pressing Exxon to face up to climate risks at this week’s annual meeting. Exxon successfully appealed to the SEC to quash a shareholder proposal to ask Exxon to disclose emission-reduction targets (see, “As shareholders get active on climate, the SEC lets companies duck votes).

At BP, Climate Action 100+, which includes more than 300 investors with $33 trillion in assets, won nearly unanimous approval for the that the company explain how its carbon emission targets align with the Paris climate agreement’s 2-degree limit on global warming. But shareholders voted down a second, stronger proposal to reduce emissions from the use of BP’s products. At Amazon, the investment advisory firms ISS and Glass Lewis recommended a vote ‘For’ a proposal asking for a company-wide climate change plan after nearly 7,700 Amazon employees have signed an open letter to Jeff Bezos. The resolution failed. The nonprofit shareholder advocacy group As You Sow has a helpful resolutions tracker and a useful proxy preview. Climate shareholders can still finish strong, but time is running out and activist organizations like are growing impatient with “engagement” strategies. If the urgency of last fall’s reports on catastrophic climate change doesn’t spur corporate change, they say, it’s time to do what more than 1,000 investors have already done: divest.

Seize the Opportunity

RSF Social Finance is hiring an investment manager in San Francisco… Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation seeks a director of influence and communications and a special assistant to the executive director at Georgetown University… ClearlySo in London is looking for an investment banking deal manager with fixed income experience… Also in London, Big Society Capital is hiring an investment manager… Open Society Foundation is looking for an investment principal on its economic justice team for a six-month term in New York or London… Generate Capital is hiring a director of financial planning and analysis and other roles… Techstars Impact is hiring three associates for its Austin-based accelerator… GLG Social Impact is recruiting social impact fellows.

Follow the Talent

Y Combinator partner Geoff Ralston becomes the firm’s new president. Former president Sam Altman, now an advisor, will lead OpenAI… ValueAct’s Spring Fund’s Jeff Ubben joins the board of agtech startup AppHarvest… Yonina Gray is the new director of external affairs at Reinvestment Fund… Al Jazeera is launching a business vertical called AJ Impact to focus on personal finance, economic inequality and impact investing.

Impact Watch

Phenix Capital released its Global Impact Platform impact fund database for institutional investors… Unreasonable Impact reports the accelerator supported 94 companies that have created 20,067 new jobs while raising $2 billion in capital (and earning $1.9 billion in revenue) over three years… Sonen Capital reports that its global equity strategy beat traditional benchmarks across all of the key performance indicators that its monitors.

Apply, Respond, Submit

The Smallholder and Agri-SME Finance and Investment Network and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development are calling for case studies on blended finance in agriculture and rural finance.

That’s a wrap! Help the growing ImpactAlpha community follow your talent: Send your own job moves, new opportunities and event announcements to [email protected].