Guest Blog Post by Magnus Berg Johansen about Workshop C2 at TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE 2015 on investing in sustainable agriculture. The panelists included Tanja Havemann: Director & Founder Clarmondial GmbH, Peter van der Werf: Engagement Specialist at Robeco Institutional Asset Management, Arnold Lau: Senior Vice President at Iroquois Valley Farms LLC, and Martin Poulsen: Partner at The Moringa Partnership.
Views and opinions are that of the writer and are not the official views of TBLI CONFERENCE.

What is the best way of investing in sustainable agriculture? Is it possible to merge profits and organic farming? Can one by adding certain components to the business model increase output? These were some of the questions that were raised during the session that tried to TBLI EUR15 Workshop C2 1showcase how one could approach sustainable agriculture.

The session started off with Tanja Havement stressing the importance of agriculture when it comes to the CO2-challenge, employment in emerging markets and for gender equality.

Arnold Lau from Iroquois, a fund focused on incentivizing mid-size farmers in the US to grow organically,  then took the floor as the first presenter. He started of stressing the fact that only 1 prosent of the farming done in the US currently is done organically.

The market is very much a nice, but the demand is growing strongly due to consumer  interest. As the cost is higher, the market share remains low and this thus hold back any economics of scale.

Lau said that many find organic farming a fad and that it is too risky. But at the same time he is excited with the fact that the management of 70 percent of US farms will shift generations during the next 10 years.

What is more, one of the main hurdles to rapid expansion in this area is because organic farming does not pay off immidiately but when done continuously for many years it is the most productive approach – mainly because the land becomes richer year after year. Eg. the moisture is better remined in the ground.

Published in Conferences

Guest Blog Post by Nada El Ahwal about a workshop (Session A2) at TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE 2015 about Impact Investing in Emerging Markets, and the lessons learned. The moderator, Gudrun Timm, Partner at Carpe Diem Partners, was joined on the panel by Charles-Antoine Janssen: Managing Partner KOIS Invest, Dirk Elsen: Director Emerging Markets Triodos Investment Management, Karsten Fuelster: Country Manager Germany, Austria, Switzerland at IFC, and Fabio Sofia: Executive Director Symbiotics Group.
Views and opinions are that of the writer and are not the official views of TBLI CONFERENCE.

A group of passionate impact investors sat round the same panel to exchange insights in what could be the trickiest part of an already TBLI EUR 15 Workshop A2tricky space: investing for social impact in emerging economies. Noting the stark differences in business practices, demographics, and regulatory conditions between emerging and developed markets, the investors shed light on the intricacies of simultaneously employing capital and driving social change in countries like India and Bolivia.

Charles-Antoine Janssen, the managing partner at KOIS Invest, an asset fund management firm, opened a lively discussion by asserting that India, as an example, was the perfect place for an investor to genuinely add value. “The workforce potential is amazing, recruits in India are working to provide a better life prospects for their families, and exhibit huge entrepreneurship and willingness to work” he adds, this creates an unparalleled potential to combine social return with financial gains.

Soon into the session, moderator Gudrun Timm, MD and partner at Carpe Diem Partners, posed an alarming statistic that capital outflows from emerging economies reached 1 trillion USD in 2015 (according to the IIC). Fabio Sophia, the executive director of Symbiotics Group affirmed, “the scary thing about this figure is that this is capital that is not invested in emerging markets, despite the huge growth potential that we can all recognize. This is a huge concern in terms of development and opportunity.” Certainly, fleeing capital highlights the political economy challenges of emerging markets, where investors look for developed markets for reasonably risk-adjusted returns.  

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Guest Blog Post by Jonelle Maltay about a workshop (Session C3) at TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE 2015, chaired by Arthur Wood, Total Impact Capital, about the role of corporates in the field of impact investing. Arthur Wood was joined on the panel by Dean Sanders, Founder of GoodBrand, Jerome Perez, Head of Sustainability at Nestlé Nespresso, Ron Layton, CEO Light Years IP and Oliver Griffiths, President Recipco Capacity Exchange. 
Views and opinions are that of the writer and are not the official views of TBLI CONFERENCE.

The workshop which examined the role of corporates in the field of impact investing was appropriately titled ‘Beyond CSR’. Historically, CSR in many instances (despite all of its good intentions) has just been ticking boxes with minimal effort and little impact. The panel participating in this discussion was comprised of several TBLI EUR 15 Workshop Arthur Woodsexemplary members in the fields of the impact investing and corporate social responsibility who have gone above and beyond traditional CSR through their roles.
Members included Arthur Wood: Founding Partner of Total Impact Capital, Ron Layton: CEO of Light Years IP, Dean Sanders: Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of GoodBrand, Jerome Perez: Head of sustainability at Nestle Nespresso, and Oliver Griffiths: President Recipco Capacity Exchange.

The discussion started with an observation which really grabbed the audience’s attention; it was the idea that foundations in the United States control $600B in assets which sounds like a massive amount until compared to the $600B spent annually by the pentagon. Maybe this suggests that the funding for impact investing exists in the market, but it’s just not easily accessible. The markets are controlled by 65-70% of people who can bring the scale needed to impact investing with the vast amount of resources at their disposal. Unfortunately however, impact investing is often seen as only a nice thing to do instead of a fundamental aspect of mobilizing capital which is what it actually happens to be. The corporate sector is highly likely to be the area that the needed growth will come from.

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Guest Blog Post written by Tiffany Vlaanderen for TBLI CONFERENCE™ EUROPE 2015, where UITP will host a session on Investing in Sustainable Transport Infrastructure. Views and opinions are that of the writer and are not the official views of TBLI CONFERENCE™.

Growing urbanization presents opportunities and challenges for global cities to tackle. One crucial area where communities feel this growth Alain Flausch 01most notably is in the daily commute. As mobility demands rise, mass transit is tasked with finding solutions to absorb transport demand. There is an urgent need for investing in public transport infrastructure, whether it be rail tracks, data collection systems, signaling systems, bus stops, ticketing machines or the development of commercial areas among others.

TBLI spoke with Alain Flausch, General Secretary of the International Association of Public Transport known as UITP, to better understand the latest trends and financing surrounding public transport projects.

What are currently the main challenges for public transport?

According to Flausch, the question is not whether we should be for or against sustainable public transport but rather how can public transport provide quality services that are efficient and comfortable enough for communities to use them. Flausch believes the difference between the individualistic and collective mentality in regard to transportation is one of the greatest challenges the industry faces.  

Published in Conferences
Thursday, 17 September 2015 00:00

In the media - September 2015

Hunting Green Unicorns and Other Ways to Make Capital Deliver Super Returns

"Conclusion: Call it a weed, call it low carbon investment, patient capital, impact investing, or call it what you will, from Rubinstein’s vantage point, the next wave of opportunity sounds like it will be a lot more than hunting for the next green unicorn." 

(Writer: Valerie Thompson, source: Deal Market)


Published in In the news
Monday, 03 August 2015 00:00

In the media - August 2015

Impact Investing Offers Opportunities to Wealth Managers

"Family Office Elite shares TBLI perspective on the value and opportunities wealth managers can capture with Impact Investing along with TBLI Case studies in South East Asia with PT Selo Kencana Energi in Indonesia." 

(Writer: Robert Rubinstein, source: Family Office Elite)


Getting the Big Money into Social Impact

"Institutional investors are increasingly interested in putting their money into social impact, but a gap remains between them and the people on the ground." 

(Writer: Ian Potter, source: INSEAD)

Published in In the news

FMO, the Netherlands Development Bank, has supported private sector growth in developing and emerging markets by investing in ambitious entrepreneurs for more than 45 years. With a focus on three sectors of high development impact: financial institutions, energy, and agribusiness, food & water, its core business over the years has been providing debt and equity financing to private enterprises and financial institutions globally.

As demand grew in nascent markets, FMO realized the need among institutional investors to learn from their experience and to better understand how to approach responsible investing in these markets.

yvonne bakkum webYvonne Bakkum, then Director of FMO Private Equity, believed FMO needed to move the needle and allocate resources for this kind of engagement.

“In terms of stimulation needed, DFIs are doing quite a lot. What we do need is more stimulation from mainstream institutional investors because I think they are talking a lot about impact investing but when you critically analyze what they’re really doing it’s quite marginal especially compared to how much assets under management they have,” says Yvonne.

“I think they are not ambitious enough [...] if you’re really serious about what you want to achieve you can of course change your policies and organizational structures. It should move a bit from ‘nice to have’ to ‘must have’ and the good news is thatthis is a trend that has already begun.”

She now heads FMO Investment Management, a separate entity of FMO, which supports and advises institutional investors by offering a selection of funds with different market based risk-return profiles to suit investor appetite. Their focus is on scalable projects with two indicators in mind across the portfolio: job creation and greenhouse emissions avoidance.

FMO IM’s first fund supports SME financing and closed in 2013 at EUR100 Million. FMO Investment Management recently launched a second fund jointly with NN Investment Partners for emerging market loans. This new fund is a broad based emerging markets private debt proposition with a clear impact angle. It addresses the search for yield and offers portfolio diversification benefits.

FMO Investment Management uses a double approach in its impact measurement model using inputs and outputs of client’s data but also macroeconomics statistics related to countries and sectors to determine progress.

“I would consider all of FMO’s portfolio to be impact investing which is not a point of view that is necessarily shared by all DFIs. We are a development bank and our whole purpose for existing is to have development impact. All our investments are evaluated to have sufficient impact.”

Yvonne Bakkum is moderating Workshop D2 "Impact Investing in Emerging Markets: What have we learned?" during TBLI CONFERENCE NORDIC 2015, taking place in Copenhagen on May 15-16.

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"ESG Integration: Challenges for Asset Owners"; Roundtable added to TBLI CONFERENCE™ NORDIC 2015 program

Chief Executive Officers of ERAFP, PensionDanmark and AP Fonden 7 will be discussing ESG Integration and challenges for asset owners in a Roundtable Discussion chaired by Ulrika Hasselgren (CEO Ethix SRI Advisors).

We are looking forward to welcoming Torben Möger Pedersen, Philippe Desfossés and Richard Grottheim to the event. 

Find more details about our continuously updated program here.

Are you interested in speaking at this event? Please submit your information here.

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Monday, 02 March 2015 00:00

In the media - January 2015

Left Right or Better: An Impactful Meeting of Minds

"What difference does your money make when you invest or divest? You might be conservative and want nature to remain beautiful forever. You might be liberal and want to undo environmental injustices. The same investment strategies may serve the goals of both. Arguing about the definition of "responsibility" will only lead to more division. "Every dollar is an impact dollar," said Tasha Seitz of Impact Engine at the Jan. 23rd TBLI conference in Chicago."

(Writer: Benjamin Bingham, source: Huffington Post)

Impact investing from the heartland: observations from TBLI’s first conference in Chicago

"I grew up in Chicago (aka Windy City, City of Big Shoulders, and home to Barack Obama) and recently returned home to participate in the TBLI (Triple Bottom Line Investing) conference on impact investing hosted at the University of Chicago Booth School’s Gleacher Center on 23 January."

(Writer: Gayle Peterson, source: Alliance Magazine)

Creating Global Well-being Through The Economy

Interview with Robert Rubinstein

(Source: Real Leaders)


Published in In the news

Among others:

  • Asia Research and Engagement
  • Asia Capital Enterprises
  • ASN Bank
  • Asian Venture Philanthropy Association
  • ASrIA
  • Bhutique Hotel Group
  • City Developments
  • Credit Suisse
  • Clean Energy Advisors
  • Eco Regions Indonesia
  • Eurekahedge
  • Frosh, Denmark
  • MSCI
  • NewForests
  • PRI
  • SEB, Sweden
  • Seventy Three Pte
  • Sustainalytics
  • Taurus Family Office
  • Topan AG
  • Urmatt Ltd
  • Vietnam Holding Asset Management
  • WWF

Call for speakers

Are you interested in speaking at this event? Please submit your information here or get in touch by replying to this email.

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We want to welcome and thank ASN Bank as a Silver Sponsor for the event.

Are you interested in becoming a sponsor? Please find more information here.

Program updates

We are happy to announce our first confirmed speakers:

  • Arvind Narula (CEO & Executive Director - Urmatt Ltd - Thailand)
  • Ewoud Goudswaard (CEO - ASN Bank NV - The Netherlands)
  • Ibrahim AlHusseini (Managing Member - The Husseini Group / The FullCycle Energy - USA)
  • Francesca Nugnes (Financial Markets and Information Manager - Finance Alliance for Sustainable Trade - Canada)
  • Jeanne Stampe (Moderator) (Asia Pacific Finance and Commodities Specialist - WWF)
  • Anna Hagemann Rise (Group Communication & CSR Manager - Frosh Aps. - Denmark)
  • Yann Gindre (Director Networks and Global Outreach - Principles for Responsibel Investment - UK)
  • MaryKate Henlon (Manager Sustainability & Communications - NewForests - Singapore)

Call for speakers

Are you interested in speaking at this event? Please submit your information here.

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We are looking forward to a rich program at TBLI CONFERENCE @BOOTH/KELLOGG 2015, coming up in 10 days. Among the 33 speakers in 10 sessions are:

Leslie Samuelrich (President - Green Century Capital Management, USA)

3PM: Workshop 3 - Low Carbon Investment Strategies

Leslie Samuelrich is the President of Green Century Capital Management, a socially responsible investment advisory firm that focuses on environmental responsibility and manages Green Century Funds. As president, Leslie is leading the funds' investment strategies and oversees Green Century's business development, communications and shareholder advocacy.
Jointly with Trillium Asset Management and 350º, Green Century recently provided an updated version of the guide 'Extracting Fossil Fuels from Your Portfolio: An Updated Guide to Personal Divestment and Reinvestment'.
Further reading by Green Century: Commentary on 'Top four reasons to divest from fossil fuel companies'.

Chris Fowle (Vice President, Investor Initiatives - CDP, USA)

3PM: Workshop 7 - Managing Climate Change Risks for Investments

Chris Fowle is the VP of Investor Initiatives for CDP in North America, managing relationships with investor signatories across CDP's Climate, Water, Forests & Carbon Action programs. Chris previously worked at Chase/JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank and Lehman Brothers.
With its global disclosure system, CDP is equipping investors to be able to engage with their investment portfolio companies on natural capital use, helping to proect their assets against the rirsks fo future regulation on climate change and energy, accesss to water and the protection of natural resources.
CDP recently published the Carbon Action Report 2014

Paul Christensen (Associate Dean, Global Programs and Clinical Associate Professor for Finance - Kellogg School of Management, USA)

3PM: Workshop 8 - Challenges for impact investors in emerging markets

Paul Christensen is a Clinical Professor of Finance at the Kellogg School of Management where he teaches courses in microfinance and international business. In addition, he serves as Academic Director for Kellogg’s Global Study Programs and as Senior Advisor for Global Strategy. Prior to Kellogg, Paul was the founder and president of ShoreCap International Ltd. and an associate and Eegagement Manager for the consulting firm, McKinsey and Company.
At TBLI CONFERENCE, Paul will be focusing on lessons learned from the microfinance industry on how to mitigate the risks impact investors face in developing markets.

To learn more about the topics on the agenda and our speakers, view our program online. Sponsorship packages are available - please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to learn more.

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We're happy to announce 3 more speakers who are confirmed for TBLI CONFERENCE @BOOTH/KELLOGG 2015, coming up in 3 weeks. We proudly present:

Caroline Vance (Vice President - Deutsche Bank, USA)

1PM: Workshop 4 - Approaches to Impact Measurement

Caroline Vance supports the Community Development Finance Group’s management of funds for microfinance and has special responsibility for relationships in Central and South Asia. She also manages the administration and investor relations of the FINCA Microfinance Fund B.V. and she supports the team's social performance management and monitoring efforts.

Caroline's presentation will focus on how to demonstrate and talk about impact and how to classify investments according to their different missions. Caroline will also discuss how Deutsche Bank’s Global Social Finance group has been grappling with these challenges in the context of its most recent social investment funds.

Betsy Moszeter (COO - Green Alpha Advisors, USA)

1PM: Workshop 2 - Structuring Impact Investing across all Asset Classes

Betsy Moszeter is the COO of Green Alpha Advisors and previously was Senior Vice President of the First Affirmative Financial Network. Green Alpha Advisors is an asset management firm founded on the belief that in order to live and thrive on our planet indefinitely there is a need for economic and technological transition to sustainability.

This interesting SRI survey: First Affirmative Survey, shows how SRI has become entrenched in mainstream finance. Commenting on the survey’s results, Betsy Moszeter says “Having reached the point where one out of two financial professionals have offered SRI options to their clients, it is clear that responsible investment strategies are now a client expectation that advisors need to be equipped to provide.”

Patrick Fisher (Founder & Managing Partner - Creation Investments Capital Management, LLC, USA)

3PM: Workshop 8 - Challenges for impact investors in emerging markets

Patrick Fisher is specialist in private equity investment, with a particular experience base in impact investments, social ventures and international/emerging markets. Mr. Fisher founded Creation Investments in 2007, leading the firm in Emerging Markets, Private Equity and Impact Investing since inception. He is a market leader in Emerging Market and Impact Investing, leading investments or providing advisory services on equity and debt transactions in businesses which serve the 'Bottom of the Economic Pyramid' (BOP) through Microfinance / financial services, health care, affordable housing, clean energy, and technology.

Limited speakers slots are still available. Please have a look at our program and submit your application if you are interested in participating as a speaker.

Published in Conferences

We're happy to announce 3 more speakers who are confirmed for TBLI CONFERENCE @BOOTH/KELLOGG 2015, coming up on January 23rd. We proudly present:

Tasha Seitz (Chief Investment Officer, Impact Engine, USA )

9:50AM: Plenary Roundtable - Long Finance: The role of patient capital for impact investing

3PM: Workshop 6 - Facilitating Social Entrepreneurship

Tasha Seitz has been a technology venture capital investor with JK&B Capital since 1997, focusing on enterprise software, Internet infrastructure and mobile infrastructure investments. She serves on the board of and is the Chief Investment Officer for Impact Engine, where she coaches impact entrepreneurs in fundraising as well as identifying the ever-evolving landscape of impact investors.

Having been part of several technology cycles as a venture capital investor, Tasha has seen the power of the entrepreneurs to create markets and touch people’s everyday lives, and she is a passionate believer in the power of entrepreneurship to make the world a better place.

Impact Engine is a 16-week accelerator program that supports for-profit businesses addressing today’s societal and environmental challenges. We empower entrepreneurs, mentors, and investors to make a collective impact on society by applying smart business principles to the world’s greatest problems.

Ari Frankel (Head of ESG Strategy, Real Estate, Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, USA)

1PM: Workshop 1 - Trends in ESG Integration

Ari Frankel is Head of ESG Strategy, Real Estate, at Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, based in New York City. He works closely with senior managers around the globe to shape and coordinate comprehensive sustainability and green building programming and related environmental and energy strategies, and participates in sustainability initiatives across Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management and Deutsche Bank Group.

Watch this interview Ari had with, earlier this year, where he was asked why gathering sustainability data has become a key project for the real estate investment industry.

Cynthia Muller (Senior Manager, Impact Investing, Arabella Advisors, USA)

1PM: Workshop 3 - Low Carbon Investment Strategies

Cynthia Muller leads Arabella Advisor’s impact investing practice. She helps our individual and institutional clients understand the field of impact investing, develop strategies, and structure investments to accomplish their social and environmental goals. Her extensive background in social enterprise and mission investing includes connecting public policy, programs, and capital for emerging social innovations to increase economic opportunities for under-served and marginalized communities.

Read her interesting blog post here about "How wealth advisors can facilitate impact investments".

Speakers slots are still available. Please have a look at our program and submit your application if you are interested in participating as a speaker.

Published in Conferences
Monday, 22 September 2014 22:00

In the media - September 2014

(Norwegian) Gjensidigestiftelsen satser i Afrika

Investerer 30 millioner i et innovativt fond som satser på bønder i Afrika.

(Writer: Magnus Berg Johanssen, source:

(Norwegian) Man kan ikke stikke hodet i sanden

Idar Kreutzer mener norske investorer må ta innover seg bærekraftbølgen som ruller innover finansmarkedene.

(Writer: Magnus Berg Johanssen, source:

(Norwegian) Vi slår markedet med de mest bærekraftige selskapene

Storebrand lykkes godt med sitt fond hvor de velger selskaper som er effektive i ressursbruk, har gode styringssystemer og som jobber strategisk med bærekraft.

(Writer: Magnus Berg Johanssen, source:

(Norwegian) De som ikke er raske nok på ballen vil komme bakpå

DNV-topp tror store bilmerker vil møte store utfordringer med Tesla, at Skandinavia kunne stått for elbilrevolusjonen og at Norge vil kunne få mange batteridrevne ferger innen få år.

(Writer: Magnus Berg Johanssen, source:

Published in In the news

Already one week has passed since our TBLI CONFERENCE NORDIC 2014 and debut in the Nordic region. It was a wonderful, intimate gathering of people from the ESG and Impact Investing world. We are very grateful for the support you have all given us!

We look forward coming back to the Nordic region in 2015.

View all pictures on Flickr

With almost 150 participants coming from various industries in US, Asia and Europe, it was highly rewarding and thanks to all who participated we were able to offer many different perspectives.

Published in Conferences

Last week CFA Institute published the interesting interview The Big Picture of Responsible Investment with Rob Lake, an independent advisor who helps asset owners invest responsibly.

The main focus of the interview is on ESG Integration in investments, the relevance of ESG considerations in different asset classes and the challenge of impact measurement.

Published in Actuals

TBLI CONFERENCE™, a global ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) and impact investing forum for asset owners and managers, presented the ESG Leaders Awards 2013 at its 24th conference, held in Zurich on November 14/15, 2013. TBLI has been bringing together thought leaders and practitioners in the sustainable finance industry for the past 15 years, with events held across Asia, Europe and the US.

Angela de Wolff, Founder of ConSer Invest SA, who led the award ceremony as a member of the Jury, highlighted the positive trend observed for this year's Awards

Published in Conferences

TBLI CONFERENCE™, the global Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and impact investor forum for asset owners and managers, has announced the nominees for the ESG Leaders Awards 2013. Winners will be presented during the awards ceremony at TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE in Zurich on 14-15 November.

The Zurich Conference marks TBLI's 24th global event, and the seventh Annual ESG Leaders Awards. The Awards profile leaders in the financial industry, and recognize their achievements in ESG and Impact Investing.

Published in Conferences
Wednesday, 14 May 2014 12:38

ESG Integration. Done! Or Not?

With a reputation for addressing practical questions for investors, TBLI CONFERENCE USA 2014 is the place to assess success stories and challenges in the ESG investment space. Speakers from Sustainalytics and RepRisk will guide asset managers and owners through the current landscape of ESG investing, complemented by the expertise of dedicated ESG investors such as Osmosis Capital and EM Capital Management.

Highlighting trends in ESG fund strategies in fixed income markets, speakers from Moody's Financial Services, International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Global Footprint Network will take the audience on a journey through a variety of investment products such as green bonds, emerging market funds and mutual funds.

Published in Conferences