$20-million fund to invest and grow triple bottom line businesses
A new estimated $20-million impact investing fund will be launched in Mexico next year, supporting and encouraging the growth of triple bottom line businesses.
Erik Wallsten, managing partner of Adobe Capital, says the fund that will invest in companies generating a social/environmental and financial return can break down the division between philanthropy and for-profit business, proving an either/or mentality doesn’t have to exist.
“As all the challenges in the world start surfacing, the real solution is finding market mechanisms that address problems and generate returns,” says Wallsten. “I’m hoping that we can start to make that happen so future generations don’t have to make the choice between philanthropy and for-profit business.”
Adobe Capital was launched last year by Wallsten and Rodrigo Villar. Villar is also the founder of New Ventures Mexico, a sustainable business accelerator. It was this company that Wallsten says first demonstrated the need for impact investors. Of the 200 companies mentored by New Ventures, nearly 85 per cent have trouble securing capital for reasons like their social and environmental mission, co-op structure or size.
Despite the challenges to creating social businesses, a number of Mexican companies are pioneering the model successfully, according to Wallsten. He points to Echale a Tu Casa, which is providing long-term financing and construction supplies to empower Mexican families to build affordable, safe and ecological homes.
Chizca is the world’s first organic biodegradable chewing gum harvested by the Chicleros people. The 2,000 member co-operative association had been harvesting chicle, a natural latex product, from rainforests for generations. Working with New Ventures, they were able to transform their product from a simple ingredient in other products to a finished product now sold in seven European countries.
Wallsten says showcasing the success of companies like these is important to inspire the next generation of social entrepreneurs, and encourage more financial investors to begin taking impact investing seriously.
He adds Adobe Capital, the first triple bottom line fund to be launched in Mexico, is relying strictly on working investment without subsidies or grants to prove impact investing is a viable alternative.
To learn more about Adobe Capital, click here.
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