Mobilizing private and public capital in innovative ways for the social good
20 February 2018, Istanbul
The United Nations has set 17 sustainable development goals for 2030. The estimated cost of implementing these goals over the next 10 years is $50–$70 trillion; the Paris Climate Agreement alone is expected to cost over $12 trillion over the next 25 years. Governmental budgets for aid and development can only go so far towards financing such projects, and even with philanthropic funds, a huge gap remains that needs to be filled.
Now is the time to focus on developing ways to finance all these social investments. The WBAF invites angel investors, corporate venture executives, fund managers, stock exchange executives and public institutions to the Impact Investment Forum 2018 to discuss a broad array of related issues, including
Mobilizing private sector capital in new and more efficient ways
WBAF recognises Impact Investment as an innovative finance solution to close the gap between global development’s funding needs and currently available resources. To attract more private capital, The World Business Angels Investment Forum is pursuing innovative financing mechanisms to mobilize private sector capital in new ways.
We need to tap into the over $200 trillion in private capital invested in global financial markets and ensure that capital is directed towards development efforts.
There is an increasing realisation that, along with philanthropy and government aid, private enterprise can contribute to solving social and environmental problems. At the same time, growing numbers of investors are expressing a desire to “do good while doing well.” These are impact investors, who seek opportunities for financial investments that produce significant social or environmental benefits. However, the rapid growth in the field of impact investing has raised issues such as how to assess impact as well as concerns about potentially unrealistic expectations that social impact and market-rate returns can be simultaneously achieved. This panel session will attempt to define the main challenges of impact investors in early stage investment markets and opportunities to address the challenges.
The promise of impact investing―investments made with the intention of generating measurable social or environmental outcomes alongside a financial return―is appealing to governments and advocates around the world as they wrestle with complex challenges like economic inequality, climate change, natural resource loss and degradation, hunger, homelessness, and failing schools. For example, in the United States, the ability to attract and apply private capital to address these issues has led to, among other things, an increased focus on the role that public policy can play in incentivizing and shaping the ecosystem for impact investing. What about South East Europe? How do policymakers respond to increasing demands for impact investment? What are the opportunities and challenges in the impact investment ecosystem of South East Europe? In this session, important players of South East Europe’s capital markets will share insights from the region.
Today more than ever, we want to take a stand against the injustices we see around the world. Just as our consumption choices send signals to corporations about what is important to us in the things we buy, so do the choices we make concerning our finances. Luckily, an increase in demand fuelled by technological advances has led to more options than ever before. Many of us feel that we cannot be impact investors without having millions of dollars to invest, but most of us can activate the money we have to support the issues we care about. This session will start a dialogue on the intersection of technology and impact investing. Panellists will discuss the benefits of using technology and the importance of being connected to the on-the-ground impact. How does technology help make access to financial options available to more people? Are there downsides of removing the human connection to the businesses you invest in? Panellists will discuss what is currently available and what they see as the future trends in this space.
Panellists from different segments of capital markets (corporate ventures, family offices, angel investors, private equities, crowdfunding platforms, stock exchanges) will discuss how they define impact investing, how it is different from philanthropic and charitable giving, how they set objectives, how it is incorporated into their investment decision-making process and the role that leadership plays in the implementation of an impact-focused strategy.
Impact investing aims to deliver measurable social outcomes. It is part of the broader realm of socially responsible investments. Encouraging the ramping up of a global market for financing entrepreneurship and innovation which directly addresses social issues—in much the same way as development capital did for the technology sector—is a key issue in the global impact investment ecosystem. This panel will make a contrastive analysis of impact investments and traditional investments. They will also discuss such questions as how traditional investments can create a social benefit, whether every investment includes a piece of impact investment, and how one can create an investment portfolio to attract more impact investors. The session will explore how to measure and monitor both financial returns and impact outcomes and ways to manage and mitigate risk, including available tools to measure impact of investments.
There is an increasing trend in capital markets to use responsible finance to search for – and fund – solutions to many of the pressing social or environmental issues of our time. Corporate ventures also intend to invest up to 10 percent of their private equity investments with private equity fund managers whose investment strategies they expect to generate positive social and environmental outcomes, and who are willing to report on non-financial impact metrics. This trend is important for shaping the future of smart finance in capital markets. This session will be essentially a think-tank session for the future of responsible smart finance in impact investments.
More high net worth women have engaged in impact investing, inspired others, influenced advisors, and served as champions of change to accelerate the development of an inclusive and vibrant impact investing ecosystem. As a result, there is in an expansion of sustainable capital to address the most pressing social and environmental issues worldwide. This session will discuss how global capital markets can include more women in the impact investing ecosystem and what the benefits from the network of women investors are. Panellists will discuss the growing influence of women (those who earn as well as those who inherit) over the world’s wealth as investors as well as influencers in the financial, philanthropic and corporate sectors.
Private sector technology and innovation help provide better public services through improved operational efficiency. The public sector provides incentives to the private sector to deliver projects on time and within budget. In addition, creating economic diversification makes a country more competitive in facilitating its infrastructure base and boosting associated construction, equipment, support services and other businesses. Since impact investors focus on the social value propositions of the investments they make, why not develop innovative public policies to support impact investors to produce more social good. Developing partnerships between public and private institutions will be a positive step towards supporting social entrepreneurs and impact investors. This session will discuss how we can accelerate collaboration between public and private institutions to fuel innovation for social good and what sort of incentives could be developed to support the impact investment ecosystem.
Financial inclusion improves health by giving people the ability to manage their medical expenses and rebound from a health crisis. Research suggests that out-of-pocket payments for health care in developing countries are a major reason that some people remain in poverty. In the absence of an efficient public healthcare system, the burden of medical costs rests on poor people themselves. Financial services such as medical insurance can provide a formal channel for mitigating the risks of health emergencies. Women in particular have a high demand for health insurance products to address the common health concerns associated with pregnancy and childbirth, including greater susceptibility to infection. This session will attempt to explore how impact investors and social entrepreneurs can take a more active role in the health industry. It will also discuss how impact investors can contribute to more financial inclusion, which will create social good for the health of a country’s population, along with options for public and private institutions to make an impact.