ImpactAlpha Open | February 27, 2024

ImpactAlpha Open: AI for workers + Latam’s impact ecosystem

Dennis Price

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ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

Greetings, Agents of Impact!  

Welcome to the latest ImpactAlpha Open, our free weekly newsletter with the top news and opportunities in impact investing in sustainable finance. Ready to go daily, and deeper? Grab a monthly, annual or enterprise subscription. Subscribe today (and save 25%).

✅ Join over 500 people who have signed up for ImpactAlpha Latin America

In this week’s Open:

  • AI for workers
  • Latin America’s impact ecosystem
  • Corridor models
  • Multi-donor funds

Ok, let’s get to it. – Dennis Price

Must-reads on ImpactAlpha

  • AI for workers. Workforce-focused VCs are optimistic that AI can open pathways to higher-skilled jobs for workers who have been shut out of the middle class, I reported. Education investors have important decisions to make about what AI solutions will help teachers and students, argues Rethink Education’s Matt Greenfield
  • Latin America’s growing impact ecosystemImpactAlpha Latin America launched this week to amplify the robust Latin American ecosystem of asset owners, fund managers, entrepreneurial support and policy expertise that has grown up in the past decade as impact assets under management and venture capital and other investments in the region have surged. Read our first edition (and opt-in to receive the next newsletter!).
  • The corridor model. In San Antonio and other cities, a new crop of mixed-use real estate ‘corridors’ are combining small business support with community and shared ownership models to revitalize neighborhoods, build local wealth and protect against displacement, reports Roodgally SenatusDig in (view our database of fund managers investing in local economies).
  • Multi-donor funds. Impact investors are collaborating to fuse philanthropy with deep impactinvesting in dozens of multi-donor funds that are built on top of donor-advised funds. The model allows for quick, affordable and flexible design and collaboration, Impact Assets’ Tim Freundlich explains in a guest post. Learn more.
  • Impact investing at a crossroads. In her annual state of the field letter, Fran Seegull of the US Impact Investing Alliance called for accountability and system-level thinking. Take a peek.
  • Common good investing. Stakeholders Capital’s Terry Mollner convened fellow sustainable asset managers, including Freundlich, Matt PatskyAmy Domini, Leslie Samuelrich and Geeta Aiyer, who together are proposing to recast the field as “common good investing” to counter conservative attacks. Go deeper.

Agents of Impact

🏃🏾‍♀️ People on the move

  • Keyur Patel, previously with PSG Equity, joined Boston Impact Initiative as portfolio manager.
  • Dahna Goldstein and Kate Goodall stand up Halcyon Venture Partners.
  • Shannon Mullins, a former sustainability and climate change manager at Deloitte, joined The Predistribution Initiative as head of special projects.

Short Signals: What We’re Reading

💪🏾 Black ownership economy. Black-owned businesses surged 14% during the pandemic. Even at that growth rate, it will take 80 years to reach parity with the Black share of the population as a whole. A new report calls on community developers, investors, and Black entrepreneurs to acquire, merge, and expand existing Black businesses. (Brookings Institution)

💰 Responsible exits. It may be tempting to rush to sell in a hot market, but a bad exit can undo decades of social impact work. A report offers guidelines to help investors navigate this crucial stage with integrity. (Cerise+SPTF)

☠️ Antitrust watch. Higher prices, lower wages, erosion of democracy. These are just a few of the ways that increasingly concentrated corporate power undermines healthy economic, political, and social functioning. (Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment)

🔻 Peak gas. European liquid natural gas demand has dropped 20% since Russia invaded Ukraine, thanks to renewable energy deployment and efficiency measures. Peak LNG for the continent is forecast for 2025. (IEEFA)

☀️ Bright future. Solar power generation in Texas keeps reaching new heights – a record 16,668 megawatts, or enough power for more than 3.3 million homes, was reached last week. The Lone Star State has tapped less than 2% of its rooftop solar potential. (Houston Chronicle)

🌿 Red, white… and green. How green are Americans? Just over one-quarter are engaged environmentalists, or “plant protectors,” according to YouGov’s sustainability report. Another 19% care about nature but are price sensitive. Some 24% are “green rejectors” with negative views on environmental sustainability and skepticism about climate change. (YouGov)

 Get in the Game

💼 Step up

  • Lumina Foundation seeks a director of impact investing in Indianapolis.
  • Runway is looking for a fund manager in Chicago.
  • SVX is hiring a manager of impact investing fund services in Ontario.

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  • Mar 26-27: Responsible Business USA (New York)
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  • April 15-17: MO Summit (Austin)

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