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‘Future of impact’ requires investment, philanthropy — and business as a force for good. As Bill Gates says, “We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten.” For its 10th anniversary last month, Liquidnet For Good hosted “The Future of Impact” forum to explore the next 10 years of effective philanthropy, impact investing, and business as a force for good.
What will the next ten years of impact look like? How might we generate impact using the tools of philanthropy, investing, and traditional companies? How can we learn from others who are also working to generate impact in very different (yet adjacent) organizations and fields?
“Over the years, the impact that we’ve had has been incredible for this company,” Liquidnet CEO Seth Merrin said at the event. “Those are the returns that we have to talk about — the ability that it has given us to attract the right people, retain the right people, to give our people a higher purpose to what they do.”
Climate Investor One raises $412 million for wind and solar project financing. Climate Investor One was conceived in 2014 and incubated by the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance. The fund is looking to back twenty 30- to 60-megawatt projects in Africa, Latin America and Asia with up to $100 million each. What’s new is a 20-year blended fund to finance the full cycle of renewable energy projects: from “first-loss” donor-based project development fund to scope projects with renewable developers; to an institutional capital-backed construction equity fund; through a debt fund to refinance operational projects based on yield and cash flows.
The intent is to provide start-to-finish financing in markets where coordinating financial structures is inefficient or impossible, Climate One’s Andrew Johnstone told ImpactAlpha. The partnership between Dutch development bank FMO and South African fund manager Phoenix Infraworks closed on $412 million of a targeted $500 million, from Norwegian, South African and U.K. pension funds, Dutch public agencies and donors from the U.S. and Netherlands. “The consistent response we got during the fundraise was ‘this doesn’t quite fit the box,’” Johnstone said. “That’s by design; nothing in climate change mitigation fits the box.”