Investing for Impact

IMPACT = Podcast with Jacqueline Novogratz of Acumen

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Episode notes

In our next episode of the IMPACT = podcast, we talk to Jacqueline Novogratz, impact investment pioneer and Founder and CEO of Acumen.

Jacqueline shares her inspiring journey of creating Acumen in 2001, with a vision of changing the way the world tackles poverty by providing patient capital to support businesses and entrepreneurs. She also talks about some of the early successes and failures of Acumen, and how they shaped the organisation’s strategy and culture. 

To date, Acumen has invested over $150 million into over 150 companies across Africa, Latin America, South Asia, and the United States. These companies have leveraged an additional $746 million and brought basic services like affordable education, health care, clean water, energy and sanitation to more than 308 million people.

Prior to Acumen, Jacqueline founded and directed The Philanthropy Workshop and The Next Generation Leadership programs at the Rockefeller Foundation. Jacqueline serves on boards of the Aspen Institute and 60 Decibels and sits on the Advisory Councils of the Harvard Business School Social Enterprise Initiative, the Oxford Said Global Leadership Council, the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights, and UNICEF.

In this conversation with our host Andrew Murray Watson, Jacqueline discusses the constant need for the impact investment industry to learn and adapt to the changing needs of the communities it serves - leveraging data, technology, and partnerships to measure and improve its impact where possible. She also shares some of the principles and practices of moral leadership within impact investing and discusses the importance of bringing in the right kind of capital to help companies scale.