ImpactAlpha Open | June 4, 2024

ImpactAlpha Open: ‘Pro-America’ lending + impact accounting standards

Dennis Price

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ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

Greetings, Agents of Impact! Welcome to the latest ImpactAlpha Open, our free weekly newsletter of the top news and opportunities in impact investing and sustainable finance.

👋 ImpactAlpha’s David Bank will be at the GIIN’s West Coast Impact Forum in San Francisco this week with our colleague Joe Whitwell and in Park City for the Sorenson Impact Summit with ImpactAlpha’s Aaron Kissel. I’ll be in Buenos Aires for Pro Mujer’s GLI Forum Latam. Say hi! – Dennis Price

🎉 Take $100 off. Enjoying ImpactAlpha Open? Go deeper, and daily, to unlock the alpha in impact. Subscribe today (and save 25%).

In this week’s Open:

  • Climate on the ballot
  • ‘Pro-America’ lending
  • Impact accounting standards
  • State of regenerative ag

Must-reads on ImpactAlpha

  • ImpactAlpha Latin America. Gender-lens investing in Latin America will be on display at this week’s GLI Forum Latam in Buenos Aires. Ahead of the forum, we dropped our fourth edition of ImpactAlpha Latin America, where we’re tracking the people and capital powering the region’s impact economy. Read May’s edition.
    • Impact product diversification. In Brazil, Vox Capital diversified its offerings across asset classes to accommodate investors’ appetites for liquidity, risk and time horizons, as Vox’s Daniel Izzo and Daniel Brandão explained. Learn about their journey
  • Climate on the ballot.ImpactAlpha’sJessica Pothering digs into the climate stakes in this week’s elections in Mexico, India and South Africa. Read it while it’s hot.
    • Contributing editor Shefali Anand reports on the election from Delhi where temperatures have recently reached 126 degrees Fahrenheit. Read more.
  • ‘Pro-America’ lending. On the most recent Agents of Impact Podcast, Damien Dwin, founder of Lafayette Square, joins David Bank to talk about lending to middle-market businesses reaching low- and middle-income people and places away from the coasts. Listen to the pod.
  • Flexible finance for climate solutionsBrian Wayne of Curvepoint Capital, which last week spun out Aegon Asset Management, sees an opportunity for the firm’s brand of structured finance as government incentives, corporate demand and falling cost curves for climate solutions create what he calls “a snowballing effect.” Read more.
  • Meeting demand for impact accounting standards. Impact accounting that accounts for the value created (or destroyed) for all stakeholders finally appears to be converging on the simpler and interoperable standards that investors demand, writes Dan Osusky of the International Foundation for Valuing Impacts. Check it out.

Agents of Impact

🌎 These Latin American fund managers are seeking alpha in climate tech, edtech and impact (videos)

From Mexico to Chile to Argentina, fund managers in Latin America are finding overlooked opportunities for impact – and returns – in the region. Despite a venture capital correction, managers are betting on the region’s entrepreneurial talent, youthful population and homegrown solutions to climate change and inclusive growth. “A new generation of emerging managers is building on those positive trends to deliver high returns,” notes Ana Maria Aristizabal of Winnipeg Ventures, an edtech and future of work fund. Five fund managers share their perspective in video interviews from this year’s FLII in Merída, Mexico. Meet all five.

🏃 On the move

  • Lafayette Square launched the Lafayette Square Institute, which will be led by Antony Bugg-Levine as president. 
  • New Energy Nexus named Henri van Eeghen, a veteran of Cordaid, Mercy Corps and the Synergos Institute, to succeed CEO Danny Kennedy in August. 
  • Rofem Egbe, a former portfolio manager at Co-Creation Hub, joined Mercy Corp Ventures as an investment associate.

The Week’s Podcast

🎧 This Week in Impact. Host Brian Walsh takes up ImpactAlpha’s top stories with editor David BankUp this week: climate is on the ballot across the globe, whether politicians admit it or not; how impact accounting standards are meeting investors’ demands for interoperability; and what it means to build bridges across the “missing middle” for commercial climate solutions.

Short Signals: What We’re Reading

♀ Gender Smart. Reproductive health for women is chronically underfunded, especially after the overturning of Roe v. Wade. In a report, the Milken Institute explored how private funding, including blended capital, can “fill gaps to scale innovation and deliver equitable, high-quality care across research and development, infrastructure, products, and services.” (Milken Institute)

⚕️ Investing in social determinants of health. Health outcomes are intimately tied to social factors. Community Capital Managementlays out the case for impact investing in the social determinants of health. Impact products that can help: impact bond funds, real estate investment trusts, or REITs, and community development financial institutions, or CDFIs. (CCM)

🏳️‍🌈 Pride month. Despite accounting for 8% of the population, LGBTQ+-led ventures received just 0.5% of the more than $2 trillion in startup funding in 2023. In “Outsized Impact,” the VC firm Colorful Capital argues that supporting LGBTQ+ companies and founders, investors can reduce systemic risks, improve portfolio performance and strengthen social resilience. (Colorful Capital)

👩‍🌾 The state of regenerative ag. Veris Wealth Partners’ 2024 investment overview of regenerative agriculture explains how the firm differentiates agricultural practices that “restore, improve, and enhance the biological vitality” of farming landscapes. Areas of promise: “supporting farmers, upstream technology, midstream companies and infrastructure, food and product companies sourcing regenerative inputs.” (Veris Wealth Partners)

📍 Bottom up: The hallmarks of “community-centered economic inclusion” initiatives are hyperlocal scale, interdisciplinary scope and decisionmaking that integrates both community level leadership and city and regional officials. A Brookings Institution study says it’s time to abandon top-down or ‘trickle-down’ approaches for “community-centered models that have demonstrated true promise.” (The Brookings Institution)

Get in the Game

💼 Step up

  • Hamilton Lane is looking for a vice president of impact investments in suburban Philadelphia.
  • Emerson Collective seeks a senior director of data in social impact in Washington DC.
  • Alive Ventures is hiring a senior investment analyst/associate in Colombia.

Visit ImpactAlpha’s Career Hub for more hundreds of more impact investing jobs.

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