#105 Sir Ronald Cohen – Is Impact Turning Profitable?

In our new CONVOCO! Podcast Corinne M. Flick speaks with Sir Ronald Cohen, a pioneer of British venture capital and a leading figure of today’s social investment movement, about: 


 Is Impact Turning Profitable?

Talking to us from his home in Tel Aviv, Sir Ronald also shares his thoughts on the conflict between Israel and Hamas in the latter half of the conversation.

Here’s what he said:

On impact investing:

Impact investment seeks to invest to achieve both financial return and a positive outcome in terms of people and planet … Businesses can help to reduce the huge economic and social gaps that exist in our society alongside governments.

We are now able to measure the impacts of companies and turn them into currency.  … This impact transparency is going to change the way we make investment and business decisions.

There’s going to be a huge transfer of wealth from baby boomers to millennials. $53 trillion is the figure that’s being bandied around. It’s like the early days of the tech revolution. Businesses that don’t embrace impact thinking will be left behind.

Transparency allied with technology and a change in values means that investors today can make more money by optimizing risk, return, and impact than by just optimizing risk and return. The companies that pollute more are already worth less than their competitors.

On the war between Israel and Hamas:

It’s a dangerous time. This could be a local battle between Israel and Hamas, a regional war with Hezbollah, a militia under the control of Iran, or it could even become a wider conflict involving the United States and Russia.

We have to look through this crisis. We have to isolate the extremists on both sides and consolidate the centrists who are still the vast majority.

A demilitarized Palestinian state will be the solution in my view. We will have to consolidate the ability of the Palestinian Authority and hopefully weaken Hamas sufficiently for the Palestinian Authority to come back into Gaza.

Previous #104 Salil Shetty –  How Authoritarian Leaders Capture Democracies


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