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New Zealand Impact Investing Network announces National Advisory Board

Eight Kiwis from around the country have been elected and appointed to form the National Advisory Board for Impact Investing in New Zealand. 

The 80-person launch event last Thursday, organised by the Ākina Foundation, hosted by JBWere and Giving Architects and welcomed by Hon Peeni Henare, Minister for Community and Voluntary Sector, was an important milestone for the investment community, celebrating the opportunity, bravery and bold action ahead. 

Members of the board include Louise Aitken from the Ākina Foundation, Alex Hannant from Pocket Knife, Raewyn Jones from WELTrust, John McCarthy from Tindall Foundation, Jamie Newth from Soul Capital/University of Auckland, Simon O’Connor from RIAA, David Woods, the current Deputy Chair of the Board, and Anne-Maree O’Connor from NZ Super as an observer member.

Aitken says, “It was a fantastic opportunity to reinforce the value that social enterprise and impact investment will deliver for the NZ economy.”

The Impact Investing Network (IIN) provides a platform for discussion and coordination across the developing impact investment sector in New Zealand.

Woods says, “New Zealand is ready for Impact Investing, it’s a frequent request, more and more people are asking for impact and the opportunity to invest in social or environmental outcomes.”

Later this year, the National Advisory Board aims to join the Global Steering Group on Impact Investment, and contribute to global market development alongside the Australian and other international advisory boards from the 18 member countries.

Woods concludes, “It’s great to see how the momentum and the enthusiasm have grown in over the last two years. 

“Now we need to convert it to transactions.”

“The National Advisory Board will be electing a Chair and ensuring that the diversity of the board represents all sectors involved in Impact Investing.”

Impact investments are investments made into organisations and funds with the intention to generate social and environmental impact alongside a financial return.

Around the world, impact investing is attracting a variety of investors and provides a broader range of financing options to advance social and environmental solutions. Mirroring global developments, interest in impact investment in New Zealand is on the rise. 

As an emerging community of practice around impact investment grows, it should be supported in order to enable connectivity, education, coherence and investment. 

This network is a response to this need and facilitates the coordination between actors to foster market development and activity.

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