Do you wish to make a positive change on the planet? How about trying impact investing! Here are some of the best impact foundations you can invest in to help save our planet and future generations.
Impact investing is a good way to make money while making a positive social and environmental change. If you would like to diversify your investment portfolio in a way that matters, this is an excellent investment route to consider.
Currently, numerous companies, individuals, organizations, funds, and foundations, have seen the need to protect society and the environment in what they do.
This way, they not only look at making profits but also do so in a sustainable way. Impact investing is the way to go now and in the future! Today, we focus more on the best impact investing foundations that one can join. What are impact investing foundations? What difference are they making in society?
Well, get all these answers and more in this complete guide.
Table of Contents
- How to Choose the Right Social Impact Foundations
- Area of interest
- The Team
- Investment Strategy
- Best Impact Investing Foundations
- 1. Urban Us
- 2. Women’s World Banking Asset Management
- 3. Vital Capital
- 4. Adobe Capital
- 5. Bridges Fund Management
- 6. Calvert Impact Capital
- 7. Ecosystem Integrity Fund (EIF)
- 8. Ecotrust Forest Management
- 9. Housing Partnership Equity Trust
- 10. InvestEco Capital Corporation
- 11. Reach Capital
- Related Resources
How to Choose the Right Social Impact Foundations
Area of interest
Your area of interest can guide you on the right impact investment foundation to consider. Here, it all boils down to what you are passionate about.
For instance, if you are passionate about climate change, we have foundations that focus on creating positive change by conserving the environment.
Also, the social impact field is so wide and covers other areas such as education, renewable energy, and gender equality.
Remember to check the foundation’s background that you want to invest in. You can do this by researching how it was started and how it is being managed.
Check the team of partners and read their backgrounds. This will help you to know whether they are capable of managing the impact investing foundation to fulfill your impact investing goals.
For instance, if they have experience in the field, then this is a good sign, and you can be sure that your money is in good hands.
Numbers never lie. A good impact investing foundation should have proof of numbers. You should be able to see what they have achieved over the years.
If they are making a profit, you should be able to see it through numbers. Read their reports and see their performance over the last few years.
This will tell you whether you need to put your money into the foundation or not.
The investment strategy used by the impact investing foundation matters a lot. You need to understand how they go about choosing a viable investment.
Transparency is important in this area, so you will be sure that they value integrity and clients.
Also, how are their mission-related investments? How much money have they dedicated to helping them achieve their mission?
Impact investors should consider all these angles before investing their money in any of these so-called impact foundations.
The whole idea of making impact investments is to bring positive social and environmental impact. This can be done by maintaining integrity and ethics. If the company does not uphold ethics, it might not be very good at impact investing.
Always make sure that the impact investment funds you choose are concerned about the communities and want to make true positive change.
Best Impact Investing Foundations
If you wish to engage in responsible investing, whether through the public or private sector, here are some incredible impact investing foundations you can consider;
1. Urban Us
Urban Us is a climate change foundation based in Brooklyn, New York, United States. The foundation was established in 2013 and focuses on combating climate change in cities. Their area of focus includes water, energy, waste management, and public safety.
The company is managed by 12 people who previously sold technology to help cities achieve zero emissions by the year 2030.
The company works by funding startups that are working to combat climate change in cities. Some of the companies in their portfolio are involved in water demand shaping, food resilience, and climate insurance.
Their goal by the year 2030 is to have 1000 portfolio companies valued at $ 100 billion. Urban Us prioritizes investing in seed-stage companies and helps them create scalable solutions to solve different climate challenges.
It is among the few private foundations that are making significant strides toward a better planet.
Women’s World Banking is a women’s financial inclusion foundation that was founded in 2007. It focuses on gender equality by highlighting low-income women.
The foundation works by partnering with financial service providers to offer private equity funds and leadership. Their goal is to invest in women since they promote social and financial growth in their communities.
Presently, it is estimated that one billion women in the world lack access to financial funding. The foundation invests in a financial institution that believes in investing in women and giving them access to funds.
Also, besides investing financially in women, the foundation empowers women by offering leadership programs and asset management. The foundation currently has 27 investors from different sectors such as financial institutions, individual investors, and private pension funds.
Therefore, if you are looking for the best impact investing foundations that focus on women, this one fits the description.
See Related: Best Investments for Young Adults
Vital Capital is a development impact investing foundation. It is located in Zurich, Switzerland, and was founded in 2010. This $350 million private equity fund focuses on development by investing in infrastructure in sub-Saharan Africa.
Some of their development investment areas include agriculture, healthcare, education, and agro-industry. The team is composed of people who have extensive experience working in Sub-Saharan Africa.
They focus on investing in opportunities that are overlooked. And their goal is to build businesses that are successful and scalable.
Vital Capital solves challenges in different areas such as healthcare, food, and water. And apart from solving problems, they strive to offer high-performing returns for investors.
With over 20 years of local experience, the foundation works by using local business insights to identify problems and challenges in the local communities, thus developing the most practical solutions.
Adobe Capital is based in Mexico City, Mexico. This Mexico-based impact investing foundation focuses on social and environmental challenges affecting the communities in Mexico.
Adobe capital focuses on investing in companies that have less than 50 employees. Also, the said company must have growth potential and less than $5 million in sales.
Apart from offering financial support to companies, they also give them technical support to help them keep up with the growing needs. This is one of the first impact investing companies in Latin America.
They work as a capital investment fund and are involved in early or growth stages for social and environmental companies. The company has at least 25 investors, and they work by identifying innovative companies that benefit the community.
One of the companies that they have invested in is Habivita, a company that offers affordable housing for low-income households.
Bridges Fund Management has its headquarters in London but has offices in New York and San Francisco. The foundation was established in 2004 and has raised $1 billion in equity over the years. They focus on well-being, education, skills, and sustainable living for underserved markets.
With an experience of almost 20 years, Bridges Fund has been active in the sustainable economy for quite a while now. And, they pride themselves on investing in the future for people and the planet.
Generally, they work by creating jobs in underserved areas. The goal is to deliver better health care, education, and reduce carbon emissions.
Bridges fund has a group of passionate partners experienced in running sustainable living, meaning that your money will always be put to good use. Their main priority is to work with ethical and responsible investors.
The company uses a thematic approach to select investment opportunities. And apart from creating profit, the company aims at achieving healthier lives, future skills, and stronger communities.
Calvert Impact Capital was founded in 1988 in Bethesda, Maryland, USA. The company’s main focus is community development and affordable housing. They have invested over $2 billion and loaned money to 100 mission-driven partners.
The company works with community development financial institutions that provide loans to small businesses. But before investing in small businesses, the company does due diligence to report on impact investing.
They have been in the business for close to 25 years, so they have experience in the business. Calvert Impact Capital is a global company, and that works with all types of investors.
It focuses on investing in companies that offer solutions to climate change and world inequality. Currently, they have investments in over 100 countries, 500 organizations, and 1000 loans.
The focus areas for Calvert Impact Capital include gender equity, impact management, climate change, racial equity, and other program-related investments.
See Related: Ellevest Review
You cannot talk of top impact foundations and leave out EIF. Ecosystem Integrity Fund (EIF) is a San Francisco-based venture capital firm, founded in 2010.
The firm’s focus is on climate change and hopes to make the world a better place by focusing on energy efficiency, renewable energy, agriculture, water, waste reduction, and natural foods.
Their main focus is to invest in overlooked niches in the sustainability field. It is an early growth investor that gives priority to companies that are making sustainable changes as opposed to disruptors.
Over the years, they have learned how to balance creating a positive impact and achieving financial returns. Their strategy involves identifying drivers of change, solving real problems, and pursuing undervalued opportunities.
After being in the impact investing field for over a decade they have learned how to transform communities through renewable energy, transportation, and agriculture.
Ecotrust Forest Management was founded in 2004 in Portland, Oregon, United States. It is the for-profit subsidiary of Ecotrust, an organization involved in the management of forests, managing over 100,000 acres in Oregon.
With a team of 10 members, the company produces clean water, mills for logs, and biodiversity. They focus on forestland as an investment and have managed to accumulate $190 million in assets.
The best thing about this company is that it is 100% employee-owned. The majority of the owners are women and minority communities.
Apart from forest management, the company is involved in real estate management and is involved in working landscapes, farms, and ranches. Their goal is to create environmental and social impact.
See Related: Best Climate Change Mutual Funds
This is another great impact investing foundation, founded in 1992 in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. Housing Partnership Equity Trust’s main goal is to offer affordable housing by working with non-profit operators and house owners.
With 15 non-profit partners and 14 housing developers, they have 100,000 units around 39 states. The company works by acquiring and preserving affordable houses that help solve the housing crisis in the United States.
The houses offered by HPET are meant to be located in strategic locations such as a job center or community retail to cater to the working population. By investing in neighborhoods, HPET understands that this is important in household success.
The rental properties owned by HPET cater to low to middle-income households and offer a balance of quality and affordable housing.
InvestEco Capital Corporation has been in existence for around 20 years now. The organization was founded in 2002 in Toronto Canada and focuses mainly on investing in companies that offer sustainable food solutions. Unlike other companies, they invest in businesses that are in the expansion stage and so far they have invested in 15 businesses, including Vital Farms.
Apart from investing in portfolio companies, InvestEco creates true and strong partnerships with businesses. They offer a wide networking opportunity for the companies and help with the management.
InvestEco is actively involved in the strategic direction of portfolio companies. Their main goal is to define the future of food by helping small and medium-sized companies in the sustainable food industry.
11. Reach Capital
While not as old as many other foundations on this list, Reach Capital is among the best impact investing foundations we have around. The organization was founded in 2015, in San Francisco, and invests in technology solutions that help in early childhood learning.
Their goal is to make learning easy and present educational opportunities to all children. They work with learners and educators to help them achieve the transformative power of education.
And apart from the team of investors, the company has entrepreneurs, teachers, and parents who understand the education landscape.
The company is driven by success and social change by working with ambitious entrepreneurs. Reach Capital has been redefining formal education as we know it. They believe education is more than diplomas and graduation.
Some of their goals include making learning beyond the classroom, reaching as many people as possible, and creating deeper connections.