Monthly Archives: June 2012

What’s Different About Impact Investing? – An Investor’s Veiw – SOCAP: Designing the Future

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The recent SOCAP:Designing the Future event in Malmö, Sweden hosted a 45-minute conversation between Hampus Jakobsson, an entrepreneur who sold his company for $150 million, and two experienced impact investors—Niki Armacost of Arc Finance and Oliver Karius of LGT Venture Philanthropy. From “going solo” or joining a consortium to investing in unfamiliar industries, watch a lively discussion as these 3 explore the thoughts, doubts and questions of a successful entrepreneur who is interested in making impact as an investor.

Hampus Jakobsson’s company was sold for $150 million. As an angel investor, he wonders how to understand the trade-off between investing for financial return and getting the impact he wants. Oliver Karius of LGT Venture Philanthropy and Niki Armacost of Arc Finance guide him into new territory.


Hampus offers 3 criteria he uses to evaluate an idea.

Oliver & Niki ask Hampus about how he views his role as an impact investor.

Oliver discusses LGT Venture Philanthropy’s approach to impact investing.

Niki discusses Arc Finance’s discusses approach to impact investing.

Oliver asks Hampus — “If you want to transition to the impact investing space, what is it that you need?”

Thoughts on evaluating an opportunity that is unfamiliar to the investor for investment.

Niki asks Hampus — “On the question of scale — what is the formula that you go through as an engineer to evaluate whether it’s going to be a company that can scale or not?”

Questions from the audience

social entrepreneurship social impact social innovation impact investing investment LGT Philanthropy Angel Investment

Damian von Stauffenberg, MicroRate Chairman speaks on microfinance industry growth

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May 2012, Source MicroRate

Damian von Stauffenberg, Founder and Chairman of MicroRate, the first micro finance rating agency, was interviewed by the Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry (ALFI) about trends within the micro finance industry and a variety of topics including negative publicity on microfinance, how microfinance investment changed during and after the global financial crisis, and on global trends in microfinance and on microfinance funds (May 2012).

Mr von Stauffenberg discusses how a temporary slowdown in the growth of the industry during the financial crisis was a blessing in disguise as the pace of growth had been too fast. The wave of interest in microfinance on the back of initiatives such as the UN’s ‘Year of Microfinance’ in 2005 meant that the role of microfinance was overplayed by some. It is a financial product and can play a crucial role but cannot alone solve world poverty. Damian explains the challenges facing microfinance funds during the crisis and the ultimately positive impact on micro finance institutions who have emerged as more professional financial intermediaries. He explains that social rating is a necessary complement to microfinance as there is a need to ensure promises are being fulfilled and that microfinance is helping people. Microfinance provides a means for poor people to become productive and thereby less poor. As such it is a hugely attractive product and the industry is once more growing rapidly.