> Posted by Paul DiLeo, Todd A. Watkins, and Anna Kanze
Discussion of impact investing has grown increasingly heated. There’s a conference nearly every week. Several weekly clipping services—even a daily one—share news of the latest investments and conversions: 100% for impact! New benchmarks! New sectors! Perpetual motion! What fuel is creating this heat? The cold conviction that someday soon, all investing will be impact investing!
Meanwhile, in a parallel universe worried about losing its gravitational pull, a debate waxes and wanes over whether microfinance should be disqualified as an impact investment, either because its subsidized, non-profit origins magnetically repel VCs or because randomized controlled trials find that the average benefit to clients of microcredit is modest.
Which is ironic, because microfinance and its sister star, financial inclusion, remain the largest impact sectors in annual investor surveys.
This hyperactivity and incoherence can only mean one thing: the term “impact investing”…
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