Imprint Capital working with foundations to the tune of $200m

Last Fall, Lauren Cochran of Imprint Capital skyped into the Impact Investing course from her office in New York to discuss the due diligence process they use to investigate whether a potential investment is expected to produce the impact and generate the return that their client seeks. The session was a highlight of the class, especially with her “show and tell” of the product of a Kenyan firm Imprint Capital had been investigating for a client. M-Kopa ( provides an innovative way for a family to make payments on purchased solar power equipment using their cell phones. The equipment provides lighting and cell phone charging, saving kerosene costs, reducing the risk of fire, eliminating the health hazard of kerosene fumes and providing better, more consistent light.

Imprint Capital was in the news recently with a press release from the White House. It shows how foundations are thinking more broadly about the resources they can bring to bear to accomplish their goals. Rather than only relying on the income of the foundation to make grants, foundations are also thinking about how their foundation’s assets are being invested and are actively seeking opportunities to place funds in companies that are addressing issues related to their missions. However, this money is not given just to feel good. The companies are expected to be well run and generate the revenue to earn a return on the investment to go back into the foundation. Read more below:


SAN FRANCISCO, CA, June 25, 2014 – Five clients of Imprint Capital Advisors announced today significant commitments of capital to investments that seek both financial return and positive social and environmental impact. Imprint Capital is working with each to build and manage high performing impact investment portfolios. The announcements were made in Washington, D.C. at an event convened by the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation.

The five, which are representative of Imprint’s broader client mix, consist of two private independent foundations, two wealth managers, and one religious congregation.

The Minneapolis-based McKnight Foundation, with assets totaling $2 billion, will dedicate 10 percent of its long-term asset portfolio to investments that align with and advance its philanthropic objectives. Imprinthas been assisting the Foundation with this $200 million allocation to a combination of public and private investments. The New York-based Nathan Cummings Foundation has dedicated $6.5 million of its $400 million endowment to a portfolio of private fund and direct investments that target its mission interests in economic inequality and climate change.

A growing number of wealth managers are offering impact investment options to their clients. Abacus Wealth Partners has committed $7 million to its second private equity fund-of-funds focused on a wide array of impact areas. And the Arjuna Income & Impact Fund of Arjuna Capital and Baldwin Brothers Inc. will invest $10 million of client capital in private debt opportunities across the themes of clean energy, conservation, and community economic development in the U.S. and emerging markets.

Finally, the Franciscan Sisters of Mary, a religious congregation of women based in Bridgeton, Missouri, has dedicated nearly $10 million to private debt and equity investments that promote the compassionate care of creation, including investments related to the mitigation of climate change.

“It is a privilege for Imprint Capital to work closely with these five outstanding clients,” said William F. McCalpin, the firm’s chief executive officer. “We salute them on the announcements they made today and look forward to our continuing collaboration on customized portfolios of investments that deliver financial and impact results.”

The White House event coincided with a meeting of the U.S. National Advisory Board to the G7 Task Force on Impact Investing. Imprint’s co-founder John Goldstein is a member of that Board and participated in discussions about its recommendations to the Task Force, including briefings with congressional officials.


Founded in 2007, Imprint Capital is a registered investment advisor that builds and manages portfolios of impact investments for foundations, families, and financial institutions. As of May 31, 2014, the firm had more than 35 client relationships and $400 million in assets under advisement. In its seven-year history,Imprint has worked with its clients to make more than 120 investments across asset classes, geographies, and impact themes as diverse as education, health care, food and agriculture, energy and the environment, and the economic development of low wealth communities. The firm has offices in San Francisco and New York.

For more information, please go to or email
Press contact: Adam Gromis (Imprint Capital) at (415) 692-6096 or

This entry was posted in Impact Investing Class. Bookmark the permalink.