Finance and SRI News

From Wall Street to SRI: Former Goldman Sachs Exec Invests in Triple Bottom Line

(3BL Media and Just Means) - When the bottom fell out of the economy in 2008 and Scott Sadler found himself without a job, he seized the opportunity to make a shift in his career; a change he would not have considered previously. Sadler had developed a solid career in finance and had worked at the VP level with Wachovia Bank and more recently, with Goldman Sachs.

Bringing Women into Africa’s Growth Story

(3BL Media and Just Means)- Yasmin Belo-Osagie and Afua Osei’s paths first crossed when they worked together at McKinsey & Company. But the idea to start a pitch competition and entrepreneurial training organization for women-owned, African companies was birthed a few years later during a women’s conference.

SolarCity Launches Major Program For Small and Mid-sized Businesses

(3BL Media/Justmeans) - Hillary Clinton has just rolled out her climate change plan, which would rapidly expand our use of renewables, tripling the number of installed solar panels to half a billion by the end of her first term. That’s certain an ambitious goal. In her statement she indicated her intention to rely heavily on tax credits to accomplish this. Whether or not that will be sufficient remains to be seen, but another announcement made yesterday by SolarCity, should certainly help.

The California-based company announced a new plan that would target small and medium sized businesses (SMB) as a huge untapped for solar energy systems. Focusing initially on owner-occupied businesses in California, the rollout contains a new pricing model that will allow these businesses to pay anywhere from 5-25% less for electricity than they currently pay, depending on usage and current cost, with no upfront charges. Twenty-year fixed rate financing will lock in savings, even if utility prices go up.

There are currently 28 million small and medium businesses in the US, which account for 99% of all businesses. It’s difficult to get a breakdown on what portion of energy use that amounts to, though this report from EERE suggests that this segment accounts for roughly 40% of all commercial building square footage (including government offices, but not malls). The report also highlights the substantial opportunities in energy efficiency while noting that California has been far more successful in reducing energy use than the rest of the country. This falls in line with the conventional wisdom that suggests that improving efficiency first, before installing renewables, is the more efficient path.

Impact Investments Can Bridge $2.5 Trillion Annual Gap for Development

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Investments that have a social or environmental benefit have grown substantially in the last few years. A recent report from the Washington-based Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment said that socially responsible investment assets in the U.S. stood at $7 trillion in 2014, registering an increase of 76 percent over 2012. A significant portion of these investments are aimed at helping developing countries.

MetLife Foundation Partners With Opportunity International to Transform Financial Services In Rural China

3BL Media/Justmeans) – Amidst the news about China's stock market which has been of a roller-coaster ride this year, the MetLife Foundation has announced a three-year, $1.8 million partnership with Opportunity International to promote knowledge and access to financial services in rural China.

IMF and MDBs Announce $400B Financing to Boost Sustainable Development

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – To achieve the global Sustainable Development Goals, it is essential to increase investment and resource flows to developing countries. However, this can happen only where a country has a coherent development strategy, support for key public sector services, and a business environment that promotes growth.

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