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Learn about impact investing

Impact investment 

is investing with the intention to generate positive, measurable social, cultural, or environmental impact alongside a financial return.

What makes impact investing different?

1

Intentionality:
Impact investors’ intention to create specific social, 
environmental, or cultural outcomes from their investment.

2

Measurability:
Requires a clear process and framework in place to measure the impact performance of the investment.

3

Financial returns:
Distinguishes impact investment from philanthropy as investors seek commercial returns from their investment.

4

Additionality:
The impact would not have been produced without the investment.

Why does impact investing matter?

It makes sense for the planet and people.
Impact investing is a critical contributor, as it intentionally seeks to solve New Zealand’s environmental and social challenges. Contributing to real world outcomes such as social housing affordability, carbon reduction and inequality.

Regulators require it
The unfortunate rise of ‘greenwashing’ and ‘impact-washing’ has drawn the attention and action of regulators.

Consumers demand it
Consumers and retail investors are increasingly demanding transparency to guide their spending and investment decisions.

It makes business and financial sense.
Impact investments broaden the considerations for investors to include impact alongside risk and return in their decisions.

Incentivises other forms of investment:
Impact investment can mobilise private, public and philanthropic capital.

What makes impact investing unique in Aotearoa?

Culture: Our definition of impact investing largely aligns with the agreed international definition with the addition of ‘cultural’ to recognise our unique relationship in Aotearoa NZ with mana whenua and Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Te Ao Māori perspectives take into consideration intergenerational thinking and interconnectedness of communities. These perspectives broaden the investment context through defining ‘return’ on investment and ‘impact’ that is contextually relevant for Aotearoa New Zealand.

Place-based impact investments are specific to a geographic location. The Community and Philanthropic Trusts' focus on place-based investing that matches investment to context of place, people and culture.

Indigenous economy: Aotearoa’s impact investment sector differs from many other developed economies in the way its indigenous organisations can realise their long-held economic worldview through their investment practices.

Case Studies

BayTrust

Community trust focused on community welfare in the Bay of Plenty area of New Zealand. The trust manages over $250m of investment capital with 10% of this capital targeted for impact investments and impact loans and the proceeds from all investments directed to community grants, impact loans and impact investments.

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Soul Capital

Soul Capital invests in enterprises and projects whose purpose is to tackle societal or environmental problems head on with innovation and scalable business models.

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Purpose Capital

Purpose Capital is a private equity stage fund whose mission is to drive social and environmental change and demonstrate a new way to make money work. The fund's challenge areas are: affordable housing, social inequality, climate change, and environmental degradation.

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Impact Enterprise Fund

Investments focus on expansion opportunities in fast growing sectors such as sustainable food production, agriculture technology, healthcare, clean energy, and education.

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Climate VC Fund

The fund is looking to invest across Australasia and the Pacific into early-stage ventures generating market returns and with potential for out-sized and mitigation of climate risk and/or its impact.

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