How Ankur Capital is following a different path to impact investment
Friday, April 4, 2014
In 2010, J.P. Morgan estimated the potential capital need for impact investments (targeting the part of the global population earning less than $3,000 a year), which drive not just social impact but also financial returns, to be $400 billion to $1,000 billion over the next 10 years. Fortunately, over the last 20 years, the number of specialised commercial funds in the impact investing space has risen 10 times. Capital committed to impact investing via private equity style active managers alone has risen from $4 billion to $12 billion over the same period.
Promise for inclusive models
In India, one such social venture funds that invest in startup businesses is Mumbai-based Ankur Capital. The fund enables startups to impact low-income communities by backing entrepreneurs who have inclusive models that can lead to transformations in these communities. “When I started working as a mentor to social entrepreneurs, I realised the gap they faced as entrepreneurs was very large, especially in the impact space. Money was only one part of the challenge—long term and vested advisory was another one. That was the trigger to set up Ankur,” said Ritu Verma, founding partner of the fund.