Irish Impact 2015: Social Entrepreneurship and the Power of Impact Investing

Author: Gigot Newsletters

With more than 300 registrants, students, faculty, social entrepreneurs and impact investors from around the country came to learn more about impact investing from institutional investors, private equity and social enterprise funders, and many other amazing practitioners.

The keynote speaker for the conference was Andi Phillips, a vice president in the Urban Investment Group at Goldman Sachs. Impact investing has the power to drive worldwide social change, and Andi has seen this firsthand through the firm’s impact investing business focused on community development, social impact bonds and financing for small businesses. Since 2001 this Goldman Sachs’ impact investing business has committed more than $4 billion to underserved communities across the United States.

In addition to Ms. Phillips’ keynote, there were numerous panels and discussions held across the two-day conference, including a case study featuring the Chicago-based accelerator/fund, Impact Engine, addressing social entrepreneurial ecosystem needs; investing professionals from student-led funds at the University of Michigan, Columbia University, and the University of Utah; as well as impact-first and finance-first practitioners representing USAID, the Clinton Foundation, Open Road Alliance and Catholic Relief Services.