The 15th EVPA Annual Conference was the ultimate interactive event for foundations and impact funds. Organised in partnership with the ImpactFest by the city of The Hague, at this anniversary edition participants had the chance to:

  • Network and collaborate with 750 world class practitioners and experts in the field from 50+ countries
  • Discover new global trends on investing for impact and deepen their knowledge to support social change
  • Participate in 100+ interactive and creative sessions on issues like social housing, environment and migration
  • Discover new instruments to create more social impact
  • Use the unique opportunity to bring their investees to the Impact Fest and showcase their work
  • Meet 300+ social enterprises from all over the world.

The European Venture Philanthropy Organisation (EVPA) has become the important catalyst in matching billions of impact funds with innovation, creativity and sustainability.” This definition, given by EVPA Board Chair Filipe Santos, defines in the best possible way the path towards investing for impact that started back in 2004.

Major highlight of the EVPA 15th Annual Conference that took place in The Hague on 6-7 November was the launch of the anniversary report “15 Years of Impact – Taking Stock and Looking Ahead” with Her Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands receiving the first copy. With this report, EVPA identifies different impact strategies and introduces the Charter of Investors for Impact, a living document consisting of ten driving principles distinguishing the DNA of investors for impact vis-á-vis other investors. More than 750 participants from Europe and the world were invited to adhere to the principles and sign the Charter. You may find it here.

Her Majesty spoke with the founders of EVPA about their initiative to start the association to foster and strengthen philanthropy. She also spoke with organisations and institutions that together make up the landscape for capital providers. Her visit to the conference was concluded by joining the creative lab on how to attract more investors for the Clean Cooking solutions.

The report maps and presents the strengths and challenges of the capital providers in the social impact ecosystem: social impact funds and foundations, social investment crowdfunding platforms, corporate social investors, banks and the public sector. After investigating these actors, the researchers identified 10 important principles that can help the sector to move forward in the coming years. These collectively form the Charter and show the DNA of this growing sector; Investors for Impact Take risks that most others are not prepared to take, put the final beneficiary at the center of the solution and always apply the highest ethical standards.

We are a broad church. The landscape for venture philanthropy and social investment is changed dramatically over the past 15 years. We are happy that so many of the members of the start of our association are still with us here. I hope that we all make new connections to tackle the complicating issues the world faces today’, says Steven Serneels, EVPA CEO.

The 750 participants exchanged ideas, experience and knowledge in 100 workshops, labs and thematic sessions, following a unique format that allowed them to practically shape the conference according to their priorities and needs. Main topic during the conference was how pressing social issues can be addressed through venture philanthropy and social investing and how collaboration with others is key in making progress.

The EVPA Annual Conference was organised with the support of the ImpactCity, DOEN Participaties, Ikea Foundation, Fonds1818, EIB Institute, Banque de Territoires – Caisse des Dépôts, King Baudouin Foundation, Impact Capital, blueplanet Investments, Vodafone Institute for Communications and Society, Rabo Foundation, Vision DMD. The report “15 Years of Impact – Taking Stock and Looking Ahead” would not have been possible without the support of DOEN Participaties, Banque de Territoires – Caisse des Dépôts, King Baudouin Foundation and CRT Foundation.

 

What does dating have in common with building social investment partnerships? A lot, according to the experts in our new film.

“Sometimes it can literally be love at first sight… And sometimes it doesn’t work out. And that’s fine, and then you part ways and go about your business.”

Pioneers Post talks to Flavie Gayet, investment manager at Telos Impact, and Martijn Blom, impact investor at Hivos Impact Investments, about what they look for from a social entrepreneur in order to build a long term relationship.

We also hear from Wietse van der Werf, executive director at Sea Ranger Service, a social enterprise which provides maritime ranger training opportunities to unemployed young people. Wietse explains how social investors can make the relationship run more smoothly for him – and reveals his own tips for seducing a potential investment partner at first sight.

 

VISION-DMD is a patient group, industry and academic researcher driven Horizon 2020 project. Venture philanthropy through patient group funding and public investment has been critical to advance the clinical development of vamorolone, an innovative drug for the treatment of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). The project hopes to be a model for affordable rare disease drug development while aiming to advance and accelerate the clinical development through late stage clinical trials being conducted in Europe, the US, Canada, Israel and Australia. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme  under grant agreement No 667078.

www.vision-dmd.info

Artha Impact is the impact investing arm of Rianta Capital, a dedicated advisor to the Singh Family Trusts. Since 2007 our initiative has focused on alleviating poverty and creating sustainable livelihoods in India by investing in early-stage impact-focused businesses. We hold a diverse portfolio of direct investments and a handful of impact funds; our sectors of focus include the agriculture, healthcare, education and energy sectors.

Through a platform developed in conjunction with our affiliate company Artha Networks Inc., we support high impact social businesses globally, building networks and convening our peers in a virtual network.  The platform combines a workflow, marketplace and social network tool aimed not only at greater visibility and more effective collaboration between impact investors, donors, support organisations and service providers, but also focuses on the reduction of transaction costs, a key driver to attaining the Sustainable Development Goals.

The heart of our initiative is to support employment creation and provision of essential services to impoverished communities that have suffered from limited access to basics like education, healthcare, clean water, sanitation and livelihood opportunities.  Artha Impact has already touched the lives of many millions living in India today, and we aim to continue by ensuring that every dollar, pound, or euro invested for impact is leveraged by peer investor to unlock many more.

www.arthaplatform.com

www.altinget.dk/civilsamfund is the leading news outlet on civil society affairs in Denmark. We cover current affairs in the professional life of foundations, charities, associations, social economic businesses and other actors of the third sector, with an aim to support a sustaining democracy in general and strengthen the civil initiative in particular. We are financed through paywall and ads, but through donations we make knowledge sharing of the civil society sector possible. We do that by providing a civil society knowledge platform as well as podcasts, events and other activities free of charge. We continuously develop new projects, new networks, new events and ideas, and the next step is to build relations and activities in other countries. So please get in touch – you might help us making the world a better place.

www.altinget.dk/civilsamfund is a – very independent – subsection of www.Altinget.dk, a politically neutral news portal on politics. www.Altinget.dk consist of 20 separate outlets each covering a separate political sector in Denmark and 5 similar outlets in Sweden.