ImpactAlpha Open | March 12, 2024

ImpactAlpha Open: Women-led impact funds + corporate climate disclosure

Dennis Price

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ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

Greetings, Agents of Impact!

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

⚡ Plugged In: Tech equity in action. Google-backed Tech Equity Collective is working to double the number of Black developers in tech by 2030. Tech Equity Collective’s Rachelle Olden joins ImpactAlpha’s Sherrell Dorsey on the next Plugged Intomorrow, March 13 at 10am PT / 1pm ET / 5pm London. Subscribe to join

👋 Answer The Call: The Great Deployment runs through the muni bond market. Join Calvert Impact Capital’s Beth Bafford, Growth Opps’ Michael Jeans, and other Agents of Impact on the next Call, Wednesday, March 20 at 10am PT / 1pm ET / 5pm London. Subscribe to join.

In this week’s Open:

  • The Liist: Women-led funds
  • AI and corporate governance
  • Corporate climate disclosure
  • Women investing for social justice

Ok, let’s get to it. – Dennis Price

Must-reads on ImpactAlpha

  • The Liist: Women-led funds. “Nevertheless, they persist,” ImpactAlpha’s Jessica Pothering writes of female fund managers on our International Women’s Day Liist of actively raising funds. View The Liist.
  • Impact in Latin America. Investors and entrepreneurs were optimistic and urgent about Latin America’s future and restarting the region’s stalled progress on the Sustainable Development Goals, I reported from Mérida. Catch up quickly (and opt-in to ImpactAlpha Latin America).
  • AI and corporate governance. The (possible) advent of artificial general intelligence has made Elon Musk an unlikely (and perhaps unreliable) ally in corporate-governance efforts to steer major AI companies to the public good, as B Lab’s Andrew Kassoy writes. Read Kassoy’s post.
  • Corporate climate disclosure. Last week’s 900-page rule on climate disclosure stopped short of requiring corporations to report Scope 3 emissions. But the SEC rules level-up corporate disclosure of transition costs and physical climate risks and may yet advance efforts to establish true emissions accounting, as Andrea Riquier and David Bank reported. Go deeper.
  • Wrestling with a predatory financial system. In a guest post, Kataly Foundation’s Lynne Hoey explored the contradictions of working within extractive financial systems in order to transform them. Get Hoey’s take.

Agents of Impact

♀️ Five women who invest for social justice

Everyone in the impact investing ecosystem has an impact origin story, a moment that pointed them toward business and finance as tools for social change. For International Women’s Day, we were pleased to share important moments in the lives and careers of five women in impact investing, in their own words. The stories are excerpted from “The Social Justice Investor: Advance Your Values While Building Wealth,” by Andrea LongtonPre-order the book and RSVP for the April 23 launch party at LISC’s headquarters in New York.

  • Beth Bafford of Calvert Impact Capital reflects on her choice to turn down a lucrative job at an investment bank to volunteer for the presidential campaign of a not-so-well known senator from Illinois. Read more.
  • Rachel Robasciotti of Adasina Social Capital shares how her personal connection to the Black community in the floodpath of California’s Oroville Dam changed her thinking about racial and climate justice. Check it out.
  • Lakota Vogel of Four Bands Community Fund recalls playing Monopoly as a kid, and  reflects on the board game in the context of Native American economic empowerment. Pass Go (and collect $200).
  • Tanay Tatum-Edwards of FreeCap Financial recounts a conversation at an uninspiring conference that opened her eyes to the internalized ways she was holding herself back. Lean in.
  • Sonya Dreizler ofCHOIR tells the story of making an important speech about privilege and racial justice before hundreds of her peers. Read on.
  • Collect the full set.

🏃🏾‍♀️ People on the move

  • Cambria Allen-Ratzlaff, previously with JUST Capital, and Rose Easton are named chief responsible investment ecosystem officers at Principles for Responsible Investment.
  • Zee de Gersigny, formerly with the Collaborative for Frontier Finance, joined FSD Africa as investment head of venture and early stage financing vehicles.
  • Simone Balch, formerly with Cambridge Associates, joined Sonen Capital as chief growth officer.

Short Signals: What We’re Reading

🚚 China’s clean trucks. Electric and hydrogen-powered models nabbed 16% of light commercial vehicle sales in China in December, and 10% of large truck sales, defying the narrative of an EV slowdown. (Bloomberg)

👩🏿‍🌾 Benchmarking small business lending. Bank lending in East Africa to small and mid-sized agri-businesses has grown three times faster than overall lending in the region, helped in part by first-loss protections and other incentives. (Aceli Africa)

💯 All in. Compton Foundation will spend down its assets by the end of 2025. In a new report, the foundation details how, with help from advisor Sonen Capital, it is channeling 100% of the foundation’s remaining assets to addressing inequities(Compton Foundation)

🌟 African climate stars. Kumulus creates water from air in Tunisia. Complete Farmer streamlines smallholder agriculture supply chains in Ghana. Egypt’s NoorNation offers off-grid clean energy and water. The companies are among “26 African climate tech startups to watch.” (Climate Hack Weekly)

👩🏻‍💻 AI abundance. Venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz lists dozens of AI productivity apps that could reduce administrative costs for small businesses to zero, “allowing them to dedicate more time to their specific craft.” (Andreessen Horowitz)

 Get in the Game

💼 Step up

  • HSBC is on the hunt for a global head of its energy transition group in Hong Kong or London.
  • Oikocredit is recruiting a Nigeria-based investment director.
  • Finance in Motion is on the hunt for a fund manager in Frankfurt.

SUBSCRIBER BENEFIT: Visit ImpactAlpha’s Career Hub for more impact investing jobs. Contact us for job postings.

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