Creative Economy | October 19, 2021

New narratives for inclusion and investment at SOCAP21

David Bank and Dennis Price
ImpactAlpha Editor

David Bank

ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

ImpactAlpha, Oct. 19 – The arrival of Gen Z is upending culture and commerce. “They have very strong values around inclusivity,” said Marcy Ventures’ Larry Marcus on the “Narratives for Change” panel. “From an evolutionary, survival-of-the-fittest point of view, companies that think they can keep on doing things the same way and maintain their market share, it isn’t going to work.”

Macro’s Poppy Hanks said films like “Blue Bayou” and “Blast Beat” can change the discussion around immigration. The key: “Creating a narrative that people can see a version of themselves in, so they are entertained but also being educated. We do want to put the medicine in with the cake.”

The Kellogg Foundation invested in both Marcy and Macro to demonstrate that bias is a hindrance and truth-telling a necessity. “What I want to tell people is that the returns are there,” said Kellogg’s Carla Thompson Payton. “The question is whether you have the courage to stand up and do what’s right.”

  • Curb-cut effect. Investment practices that reach underbanked populations can open the market to other historically excluded groups. Mission Driven Finance dropped the use of credit scores for its placed-based fund in San Diego to reach a more racially diverse set of borrowers. The effect: The impact investment firm reached more military families, immigrants and women. “Where we can look for opportunities where others see risk is the biggest part of our work,” Mission Driven’s Lauren Grattan said at SOCAP. 
  • On Tuesday’s agenda. “Financing Climate Justice” with Doug Sims, Omar Blayton, Kerry O’Neill and Cathie Mahon at 10:45am ET; “How Sustainable Investing Goes Mainstream” with Jessica Matthews and Joshua Levin at 12:40pm ET; “Innovative DEI Investment Opportunities” with Akasha Absher, Rachel Robasciotti, Jennifer Pryce, Makisha Boothe and Aron Betru at 3:15pm ET; and “State of the Field and Practice of Impact Investing” with Fran Seegull, Cathy Clark and Monique Aiken at 4:15pm ET. Peep the full agenda.