21 October 2019
Bob Dylan once sang: "You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows".
I am no weatherman, but it is clear to me that impact investing has the wind in its sails.
It is currently enjoying real momentum.
The market is in a state of rapid, almost feverish, development.
Barely a day passes without a headline-grabbing new development or announcement.
Recent months have seen:
- A survey published by the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) which estimates the current size of the global impact investing market to be $502 billion.
- The launch of the IFC's Operating Principles for Impact Management.
- The launch of the GIIN's Core Characteristics of Impact Investing, as well as a relaunch of its Iris tool for measuring impact.
- The launch of Generation Investment Management's $1 billion impact investing fund. Apollo, Actis and KKR also recently launched $1 billion impact funds. There is now an array of private equity giants playing in this market.
- Dutch pension fund DetailHandel allocating €5.8 billion to an index that targets some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
At Environmental Finance, which has been following the sustainable investment markets for 20 years, this blizzard of activity has not gone unnoticed.
In short, the impact investment market is rapidly coming of age, and we thought it was high time that it had its own magazine to run alongside Environmental Finance and help investors navigate this complex and rapidly evolving landscape.
There is a palpable sense of excitement and optimism about impact investment – and we feel it too!
There is a sense that finance can be a force for good, and has a key role to play in helping to meet the SDGs.
This sense of optimism reverberates across all corners of the globe. Yes, there are leaders and early movers (you will hear from many of them in the pages that follow). But investors everywhere – from big institutions to family offices and retail investors – increasingly want their investments to have a positive impact on people and the planet.
Change is in the air. And that's a good thing.
So, welcome to this pilot issue of impact. It is a first attempt to design a product that serves this diverse and dynamic market.
I hope you find it useful, informative and enjoyable. And I hope that impact will be well received by the market, and that we are encouraged to launch it as a fully-fledged product in its own right.
I would love to hear your feedback.
Peter Cripps Editor of Environmental Finance and this pilot issue of IMPACT.
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