News & Updates

July-August 2021 | Field News & Resources

This page features July and August highlights, announcements, resources, and general news related to advancements in the impact investing field. 
  • A Next City article featuring MIE CEO Matt Onek discusses the harmful features of the traditional foundation model and how various private and community foundations are now screening out harmful investments and intentionally looking to make investments in companies or projects that directly generate some kind of positive social or environmental benefits in alignment with their grantmaking missions. To explore how foundations are using assets in service of their mission, view MIE's Endowment Investing Library.
  • The Packard Foundation announced six investments totaling $25MM to support Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and other BIPOC-led and serving organizations. The foundation noted that 
    addressing deeply rooted racial disparities is a new focus for its mission investments, and its Mission Investing team explored how the foundation can use its loans and equity investments to help break down barriers to financial inclusion. 
  • CNote's Capital Needs 2021 Survey Report highlights how the vast majority of CDFIs included in the study reported an increased need for debt capital and the capacity to deploy significantly more loans if provided on favorable terms. Overall, CDFIs remain in good financial condition but have several areas of underfunding that could be addressed by new debt capital if it was provided on attractive terms.
  • The 2020 Impact Investing: Mapping Families’ Interests and Activities survey was released, with grant support from John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and academic support from the Center for Sustainable Finance and Private Wealth (CSP) at the University of Zurich. The survey is part of a multi-year effort to identify ultra-high networth familys' interests and possible opportunities for future impact investment development.
  • An article by EdWeek highlights a new edtech program, Assessment for Good, financed in part by MIE members. The program is part of a larger initiative that is focused on tackling education problems that disproportionately affect Black and Latinx students, and those from low-income families. That initiative, the Advanced Education Research & Development Fund, or AERDF, is supported by $200MM from three foundations that work in the K-12 sector.
  • Numerous banks and organizations, which include various MIE members, have joined the  $30MM capital fund organized by the Memphis Medical District Collaborative and administered by the Nashville-based Pathway Lending organization. The money will be loaned to developers building homes and mixed-use buildings to revitalize Medical District neighborhoods, where poverty and a lack of quality housing, retail, and services degrade the quality of life for residents.
  • A Philanthropy News Digest article announced PayPal Holdings and the Women's Funding Network's five-year commitment to invest more than $100MM and mobilize $300MM, respectively, in support of efforts to advance gender equality and economic justice around the globe.
  • The Rockefeller Foundation’s new report on its Zero Gap Fund highlights the tangible ways the fund’s portfolio has enhanced lives and broadened opportunities and how ZGF portfolio companies were able to deliver on their impact mandates even in a year defined by uncertainty. 
  • The New Breath Foundation (NBF), in partnership with the East Bay Community Foundation, announced a $10MM fund to empower Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities, promote racial solidarity, and cultivate healing between AAPI communities and Black, Indigenous, and people of color communities.
  • A Bottom Line newsletter article discussed how new East Bay Community Foundation CFO, Red-Horse Mohl, plans to use her industry experience and connections to begin overhauling the Foundation’s asset manager roster so that it is more representative of the diverse East Bay region, and so the investments they make collectively can start to reflect the same mission as the community foundation’s grantmaking portfolio. 
  • A Pensions & Investments article reported that according to SEC Chairman Gary Gensler, the SEC will consider ways to increase diversity and inclusion in the asset management industry and whether disclosure and naming rules need to be updated for funds promoting themselves as "sustainable."
  • The Soros Economic Development Fund and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced that they have partnered with a group of investors to buy Mologic Ltd, with the aim of manufacturing more tests for COVID-19, as well as tropical diseases prevalent in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The $41MM deal is being spearheaded by the Soros Economic Development Fund, which is the impact investment arm of the Open Society Foundations.
  • A Nonprofit Quarterly article highlights how Hispanics in Philanthropy’s PowerUp Fund deployed over $2.5MM in cash grants paired with technical assistance to help keep Latinx businesses afloat in four key states: California, Texas, Florida, and New York. This year, PowerUp aims to shift from grant support to investments for Latinx-founded startups and emerging fund managers.
  • New York Life announced a $50MM investment to support the preservation of affordable housing rental properties throughout the United States via an equity investment with IMPACT Community Capital. This is the latest investment by New York Life’s $1BN impact investing initiative announced in April 2021. 

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