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& Insights

Resources created and curated to support the growth of impact investing, for those new to the field and for experienced practitioners.

Mark Van Ness

 “I felt it was really important to demonstrate that foundations can and should be investing for impact as well as profit.”

The Challenge

After building a successful career in real estate, Mark Van Ness wanted to use his expertise for high leverage social impact.  The model of maximizing profit in the private sector and then giving it away to nonprofits seemed artificially simplistic and short-sighted to him.  He was looking to deploy capital in a more impactful and sophisticated way.  “Why not use the power of the business model to solve social challenges?” he asked.

The Solution

Mark joined the Board of Habitat for Humanity and learned more about social investments with a financial return.  He began investing in microfinance in the 90s and started impact investing thereafter.  When he learned about ImpactAssets, he recognized it as a clear choice for a more sophisticated asset owner. Mark has told us, “It’s so refreshing to work with people who understand how to have impact in a financially sustainable way.”  He decided to join the Board, and shortly thereafter opened his own ImpactAssets Donor Advised Fund account, which he uses to support social enterprises that have the intention of becoming financially sustainable.

The Impact with ImpactAssets

Mark now publishes a magazine called Real Leaders whose mission is to inspire and connect ‘Better Leaders for a Better World.’  With everything he has going on, Mark relies on ImpactAssets to be a trusted partner in making a financially sustainable impact with some of his personal assets. “ImpactAssets does a lot of due diligence and streamlines the process, making it very easy and painless. I have a lot of confidence in the IA team,” says Mark. 

Ready for the next step?

Impact investments are investments made into organizations and funds that generate measurable social and environmental impact as well as financial returns.