By Jessica Droste Yagan
On Tuesday, January 30th, Impact Engine hosted the Chicago Impact Investing Showcase sponsored by MacArthur Foundation. We gathered to highlight our work and the work of Benefit Chicago, a fund that invests for both financial and social return, as well as a handful of investments that demonstrate this focus on dual return. We were happy to welcome over 300 people who are learning about, celebrating, and advancing impact investing in Chicago. This rising tide of interest in impact investing is incredibly exciting. In case you missed it, we’ve drafted some key takeaways about how impact investing is growing in Chicago and why that matters.
There is a lot of variation on how to execute impact investing, all with great potential to achieve different types of impact and different levels of financial return. At our showcase, the presenting companies represented an amazing range of examples of impact investing, everything from low-interest loans through LISC to market-leading telehealth providers like Regroup. We did a quick survey of impact investing funds in Chicago and found 21 funds which are all based here, intentionally investing for both financial and social return, and measuring both. Some of these have been around for decades, doing impact investing before impact investing was a thing. Others are very new, and there are still more in formation that will be added to our growing list.
The growth of the impact investing ecosystem in Chicago is so exciting because it matters. When we make progress as a society, it’s because we question the status quo. In January, over 1 million people across the country attended the women’s march. Some […]