Canopy-GIIN Partnership Announcement

Alyssa OplandUncategorized

Pictured (left to right): Annie Olszewski, Associate, Capacity Building Program, The GIIN; Lauren Sato, COO, Canopy; Brad Harrison, Director of Strategy, Canopy; Brett Stevenson, Manager, Capacity Building Program, The GIIN; Sarah Mahlab, Associate Director, Innovation & Investments, Canopy; Amit Bouri, CEO, The GIIN

Canopy and the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) are excited to announce a collaboration aimed at strengthening early stage investment fund managers here in the Pacific Northwest through a customized, market specific training program. The training program will be delivered over the next three years to 10-12 domestic fund managers currently investing or looking to invest in the Pacific Northwest.

The GIIN, a nonprofit dedicated to building the scale and effectiveness of impact investing globally, brings a unique perspective to the market given its global membership of over 220 organizations across 31 countries. Recognizing fund managers as a critical piece to a well-functioning impact investing ecosystem, the GIIN has been working since the formal launch of the Fund Manager Training Program in 2013 to build the capacity of emerging fund managers in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia to successfully attract, deploy, and manage capital that results in social impact. Training offered in those regions has been enabled by the support of UK aid from the UK government. To date, the GIIN Fund Manager Training Program has served roughly 200 investment professionals from 29 countries across a range of impact sectors. The program’s expansion to the Pacific Northwest reflects the organization’s interest in supporting emerging impact investing fund managers around the world in a manner that incorporates regional context.

“We are thrilled to bring the GIIN Fund Manager Training Program to new regions of impact investing activity,” said GIIN CEO Amit Bouri. “As the global market for impact investing continues to mature, strong fund managers will play a critical role in attracting and directing more capital to support businesses addressing social and environmental issues. The training partnership with Canopy will help strengthen the vibrant impact investing ecosystem in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States.”

Canopy’s mission is to build social and economic infrastructure that aligns capital markets with community outcomes. Critical to this mission, the training program intends to meet a significant market infrastructure need for a system that more consistently develops and strengthens new talent and innovative ideas. In order for place-based investing to succeed in building thriving communities, the market needs to include more investment fund managers who are well prepared to engage with institutional capital. Through the use of market experts as trainers, the Canopy-GIIN training will serve the expressed purpose of helping fund managers understand and leverage the unique needs of the market in which they operate.

“In supporting investors over the past six years as they look to deploy capital in the region, I have been challenged to find investment fund managers with the training and experience that would qualify them to absorb institutional level capital. This partnership between Canopy and the GIIN will benefit not only our members and their investment strategies, but the regional investing ecosystem as a whole,” said Canopy President and Founder Craig Muska.

In the pilot iteration, investment fund managers will complete a diagnostic assessment to identify gaps in their management processes and ensure that participants are placed with the right trainer expertise, curriculum, and training to address these gaps. The training will be delivered by market experts and offer a comprehensive approach on both the strategic and operational elements of fund management with a special focus on the integration of social and environmental considerations throughout the investment lifecycle. With one of the end goals being to develop an adaptable and replicable program, Canopy and the GIIN will work to refine this model over the course of 2015.  The program will be delivered to another group of Canopy funds in 2016-2017, with the potential to expand into other regions in the future.

Ultimately, Canopy and the GIIN are excited to partner in support of fund managers so that this group of impact investors can more successfully attract institutional capital, manage increasingly impactful funds, and have scalable impact on their communities.

About Canopy

Canopy is a membership based LLC created to build place-based investing infrastructure by mapping, researching, and training key ecosystem players.  Through Canopy PLACES, Canopy CAPITAL, and Canopy CATALYST respectively, our organization aims to turn what is currently a disconnected and emerging field into a thriving regional ecosystem that meets community-identified needs beginning in the Pacific Northwest and ultimately replicating in every region across the United States.  You can find additional information about our work here.

About the GIIN

The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the scale and effectiveness of impact investing. Impact investments are investments made into companies, organizations, and funds with the intention to generate social and environmental impact alongside a financial return. Impact investments can be made in both emerging and developed markets, and target a range of returns from below market to market rate, depending upon the circumstances. The GIIN builds critical infrastructure and supports activities, education, and research that help accelerate the development of a coherent impact investing industry. For more information, please visit www.thegiin.org.