Press Release

22nd July 2019

 

CEO of Impact Investing Institute appointed

Elizabeth Corley and Harvey McGrath, chairs of the new Impact Investing Institute, are pleased to announce the appointment of its first chief executive officer, Sarah Gordon.

 The Impact Investing Institute, which was announced on 3 June 2019, will look for more effective ways to combine financial returns with a social purpose to help improve people’s lives. It plans to build on the UK’s history of encouraging a world leading market for social impact investment and promoting the UK as a global impact investing hub.

Dame Elizabeth Corley, chair of the Institute’s Management Board, said:

“I am delighted that Sarah has accepted the position of CEO for the Impact Investing Institute. Sarah brings a valuable combination of breadth of experience and passion for the role, underpinned by a compelling vision for the Institute’s role and potential.”

Julia Unwin, chair of Civil Society Futures, said:

 "Impact investing has great potential to address social challenges here in the UK and elsewhere. Sarah has the energy and determination to involve all the different civil society organisations focused on delivering lasting social change."

The Institute will encourage ordinary savers to choose ISAs, pensions and savings products that benefit the issues they care about. It brings together the UK National Advisory Board on Impact Investing (UK NAB) and the Implementation Taskforce on Growing a Culture of Social Impact Investing in the UK (Implementation Taskforce).

Sir Harvey McGrath, chair of the Institute’s Advisory Council, said: 

“Sarah is a great appointment as the CEO of the Impact Investing Institute. Her clear values, experience and drive will enable the institute to get off to a strong start and make a real difference in further developing the market for purposeful investing in the UK and beyond.”

The Institute has broad backing across the financial services and social sector, and is supported by private firms and foundations alongside the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the Department for International Development and the City of London Corporation.

Mims Davies, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, said:

"I am delighted at Sarah Gordon's appointment as the first CEO of the Impact Investing Institute. I have no doubt her experience will boost the promotion of impact investing across the UK and globally, and strengthen our reputation as a world leader in this area even further."

Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chair at the City of London Corporation, said:

“I’m delighted to welcome Sarah Gordon’s appointment as the first CEO of the new Impact Investing Institute. Sarah brings a diverse range of experience to this role, most notably from her two decades as a journalist with the Financial Times and previously as a fund manager.

“Under her guidance, the Institute will be a key asset as the City of London leads the way in promoting responsible growth and catalysing more investment in businesses which are socially and environmentally responsible.”

Baroness Sugg, International Development Minister, said:

“Investors have the power to make the world a better place and can give people the opportunity to support  issues they care about.”

 “DFID research shows that nearly 70% of UK savers want their investments and savings to make an impact. UK aid will support the new Impact Institute to mobilise more investment in developing countries to help meet the Global Goals by 2030.”

Sarah Gordon spent 18 years at the Financial Times, where she ran the paper’s corporate coverage during the financial crisis, and was most recently business editor and associate editor.

Before journalism, she worked in fund management in the UK and the US, and at the UN Conference for Trade and Development in Geneva. She was a panel member of the recent independent inquiry into the future of civil society, led by Julia Unwin CBE, and was formerly a trustee of CSV, one of the UK’s largest volunteering charities. 

She is a visiting professor at Kings College London.

Sarah will take up the role on 3 September 2019 and the Institute will formally launch in the late autumn. 

Notes for Editors

1.    Impact Investing Institute website: https://www.impact-investinginstitute.org/A new independent institute that will help people’s invest their savings and money to benefit communities and society was announced on the 3rdJune. It will look for more effective ways to put savings and investments to work, combining financial returns with a social purpose to help improve people’s lives. It will launch formally in the Autumn.

2.    The UK National Advisory Board on Impact Investing: In 2013, under the UK’s presidency of the G8, the independent Social Impact Investment Taskforce was set up to “catalyse a global market in impact investment”, creating National Advisory Boards (NABs) for each member state. In 2017, the UK NAB produced its comprehensive plan for creating an inclusive and sustainable economy. UK NAB website: http://uknabimpactinvesting.org/

3.    The Implementation Taskforce: In 2016, the UK government set up an Independent Advisory Group on Growing a Culture of Social Impact Investing in the UK, chaired by Elizabeth Corley. Following its report, the Prime Minister asked Elizabeth to lead an Implementation Taskforce to take forward the report's recommendations. It drew on the expertise of over 80 firms and industry associations across a number of different sectors and jurisdictions. Implementation Taskforce website: https://www.grow-impact-investing.org/

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3rd June 2019

New independent institute launched to make it easier for investors to have a positive social impact

A new independent institute that will make it easier for people to invest their money to benefit communities and society is launching today. The Impact Investing Institute will look for more effective ways to combine financial returns with a social purpose to help improve people’s lives.

The body will encourage ordinary savers to choose ISAs, pensions and savings products that benefit the issues they care about. These could include investments in organisations that provide housing to homeless people, renewable energy companies or businesses committed to delivering sustainable employment.

It will bring together the UK National Advisory Board on Impact Investing (UK NAB) and the Implementation Taskforce on Growing a Culture of Social Impact Investing in the UK (Implementation Taskforce).

The initiative is being led by their chairs, Sir Harvey McGrath and Elizabeth Corley, who have launched the process to recruit the CEO of the Impact Investing Institute today.

The Institute has broad backing across the financial services and social sector, and will be supported by private firms and foundations alongside the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the Department for International Development and the City of London Corporation.

The launch of the Institute builds on the UK’s history of encouraging a world leading market for social impact investing and promoting the UK as a global impact investing hub.

Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright said:

“More people than ever before want their savings and investments to make a real difference  to people’s lives and the planet, while still generating a return. We want to make it as simple as possible for investors to put money into the issues they care most about. The Impact Investing Institute will look at more ways for people to do this, whether you’re an asset manager or pension fund, or an ordinary saver who wants to invest their money to change lives for the better.”

Elizabeth Corley, Chair of the Impact Investing Institute’s Management Board, said:

“The Impact investing market has grown rapidly in the UK and around the world. Investing for positive impact goes beyond avoiding harm and mitigating risks, and is at the centre of a wider movement towards more responsible investing. The Institute will play a significant role in ensuring the UK continues to stay at the forefront of innovation in Impact Investing, enabling UK savers to invest in line with their values and have increased ownership over the social outcomes that their money generates.”

Sir Harvey McGrath, Chair of Big Society Capital and the Impact Investing Institute’s Advisory Council, said:

“The UK is well-placed with its long running history in impact investing and as a global financial hub to accelerate the next wave of growth and innovation in impact investing. Big Society Capital is pleased to show its support to the newly formed Institute. Bringing together the UK NAB and Implementation Taskforce will create a group with impressive convening power and world-class knowledge of both mainstream and social investment.”

The Institute will be open and diverse, involving organisations and people from a variety of different areas with a commitment to investments that drive positive impact. More information about how to support the Institute can be found on its website.

 International Development Minister Baroness Sugg said:

 “The UK public gives more money to charitable causes than any country in Europe, but people might not know how to invest their money in a way that matches their values.

 “We need more private investment for developing countries if we are to achieve the Global Goals and this new Institute will do that by encouraging savers to choose ISAs, pensions and savings products that benefit the issues they care about, like climate change.”

 The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen, said:

 “We know that many savers want to invest their hard-earned money into products that make a positive impact on the world.

“Today’s announcement will support these aims, allowing more people to invest into causes that are meaningful to them, including renewable energy, community projects or education.

“This is part of our wider work to promote sustainability, including in areas like Green Finance, which is encouraging investment in projects that will protect our natural environment.”

Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chair at the City of London Corporation, said:

"I’m delighted that the City of London Corporation is supporting the establishment of the Impact Investing Institute.

“As the home of one of the world’s leading financial centres, I am proud that the City of London is leading the way in promoting more investment in businesses which are socially and environmentally impactful.”

Caroline Mason, Chief Executive of The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, said:

“The role of investment and finance is essential to encourage and back organisations, products and services designed to deliver a strong, intentional positive impact.  This movement has been growing steadily and will be given a strong boost by the role of the Impact Investing Institute in realising its full potential to build what we all know we need to work together on: a prosperous, sustainable and inclusive UK.”

Notes for Editors

  1. For more information call DCMS Press Office on 0207 211 2210

  2. The UK National Advisory Board on Impact Investing: In 2013, under the UK’s presidency of the G8, the independent Social Impact Investment Taskforce was set up to “catalyse a global market in impact investment”, creating National Advisory Boards (NABs) for each member state. In 2017, the UK NAB produced its comprehensive plan for creating an inclusive and sustainable economy. [UK NAB website: http://uknabimpactinvesting.org/]

  3. The Implementation Taskforce: In 2016, the UK government set up an Independent Advisory Group on Growing a Culture of Social Impact Investing in the UK, chaired by Elizabeth Corley. Following its report, the Prime Minister asked Elizabeth to lead an Implementation Taskforce to take forward the report's recommendations. It drew on the expertise of over 80 firms and industry associations across a number of different sectors and jurisdictions. [Implementation Taskforce website: https://www.grow-impact-investing.org/]

  4. Impact Investing Institute website: https://www.impact-investinginstitute.org/ A new independent institute that will help people’s invest their savings and money to benefit communities and society is launching today. It will look for more effective ways to put savings and investments to work, combining financial returns with a social purpose to help improve people’s lives.

 
 

Press Coverage:

HM Government - New independent institute launched to make it easier for investors to have a positive social impact (3rd June 2019)

Financial Times - Britain aims high with launch of Impact Investing Institute (3rd June 2019)

Reuters - UK govt to help savers invest in good under new initiative (3rd June 2019)

Civil Society - Government-backed impact investing body launches (3rd June 2019)

Sight Magazine - UK Government to help savers invest in good under new initiative (3rd June 2019)

FE News - New independent institute launched to make it easier for investors to have a positive social impact (3rd June 2019)

Verdict - UK launches new institute to advocate impact investing (3rd June 2019)

Pioneers Post - New independent institute to push impact investing, influence policy (3rd June 2019)

Pensions and Investments Online - U.K. seeks to spearhead social investing through Impact Investing Institute (3rd June 2019)

IPE - UK seeks to boost impact investing sector with new initiative (3rd June 2019)

Investment Week - UK sets up Impact Investing Institute (3rd June 2019)

Devdiscourse - UK Govt exploring ways to combine financial returns with social purpose (3rd June 2019)

Investment Europe - UK sets up Impact Investing Institute (3rd June 2019)

UK Fundraising - Independent institute launches to help investors make a positive social impact (4th June 2019)

Accountancy Daily - Investment body launched to support socially responsible saving (4th June 2019)

Environmental Finance - New UK Impact Investing Institute launches hunt for CEO (4th June 2019)

Impact Alpha - Science = impact, coral reef economy, Canada's Equality Fund, families' 'dry powder' for impact

IFA Magazine - New Impact Investing Institute launches