IMPACTASSETS 50™

An Annual Showcase of Impact Investment Fund Managers

IA-50-2023-logo

An Annual Showcase of Impact Investment Fund Managers

ImpactAssets 50 Help Topics
Filtering:
Use the filter categories on the left to narrow down your results. You can switch years via the dropdown menu. The numbers next to each filter represent the number of results available given your current selection. If you'd like to start over, simply click the 'Reset All Filters'� link.
Sorting:
Use the dropdown menu found in the top right to arrange your current set of results. Select your preferred sorting option and wait for the results to refresh.
Printing:
Use the print button to print the current page contents. This works for both the summary view and the full Fund Manager detail view.
ImpactAssets 50: A Global Landscape of Impact Investment Fund Managers
The ImpactAssets 50 (IA 50) is the first open-source, publicly published database of experienced private debt and equity impact investment fund managers.
https://www.impactassets.org/impactassets-50

ImpactAssets 50

An Annual Showcase of Impact Investment Fund Managers

IA 50 2022 PROFILE

Kachuwa Investment
Cooperative PBC

Total Assets Under Management: $25 – 49M
Asset Class: Private Debt - Absolute Return / Notes, Real Estate, Private Equity
Primary UN Sustainable Development Goal: 10 – Reduced Inequalities
Clean Technology, Alternative Energy & Climate Change
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Firm Overview

Category: Real Estate

Kachuwa Impact Fund is an investment cooperative and public benefit corporation focused on owning and operating “impact real estate” and investing in privately held “impact companies.” As a cooperative, Kachuwa is democratically owned and controlled by its members on a one-vote-per-person basis. By design, ~60% of Kachuwa’s assets are real estate and ~40% of its assets are private debt and equity investments. All of Kachuwa’s assets must be aligned with one or more of Kachuwa’s nine “impact themes.” Kachuwa defines “impact real estate” as having a positive impact on society and the environment via: how it is used; how it is designed/built/renovated; where it is located; and/or who it benefits. Similarly, Kachuwa defines an “impact company” as one that exists to generate both financial returns AND a positive impact on society and the environment via: what it does; how it operates; where it operates; and/or who it benefits.

Firm Headquarters: US & Canada
Years of Operation: 10 years or more
Total Assets Under Management:
$25 – 49M
Total Number of Investors: More than 25
% of Capital from Top 3 Investors: 50% – 99%
Investment Thesis:

Our economy, society, and environment would benefit greatly from a larger number of: (a) private impact companies that have access to patient, non-controlling capital that maximizes their autonomy and ability to pursue their missions; and (b) investors with diversified investment portfolios that include private impact investments. 

Investment Overview:

Most investors are non-accredited and perceive their investment options to be primarily limited to Wall Street. However, the greatest positive impact tends to be generated in private, not public, markets. If given the opportunity, more people would choose to invest a portion of their savings in private, impact investment opportunities that are better aligned with their own values. Furthermore, most impact entrepreneurs perceive their financing options to be limited to traditional investment sources that typically require that entrepreneurs: (a) give up full or partial control of their companies; and (b) operate their companies differently than they otherwise would (e.g. pursue more aggressive growth and/or profit at the expense of other stakeholders) in order to prepare their companies for an exit in 5-7 years. If more sources of mission-aligned, non-controlling, and long-term investment capital were available, more entrepreneurs would start, convert to, avoid exiting, or continue to operate purpose-driven impact companies.

Company Differentiator:

Kachuwa is one of the only investment cooperatives in the USA. In contrast to traditional funds: (1) Kachuwa is an open-ended, evergreen fund into which members can invest via annual stock offerings; (2) each member has one vote, regardless of investment size; (3) Kachuwa has fixed-price stock that eliminates the need for highly speculative portfolio valuations to determine NAV for incoming and exiting investors; (4) members don’t have to pay third-party management fees or carried interest – they instead share in the cooperative’s operating expenses; (5) Kachuwa distributes its net income to members via annual “patronage dividends” in accordance with traditional cooperative principles; (6) Kachuwa aims for a more diverse portfolio with private debt, equity, AND real estate assets; and (7) Kachuwa is welcoming to non-accredited investors who can participate in its offerings and receive 1099s instead of relatively complex K-1s (because Kachuwa is a cooperative and not a partnership).

Investment Example

Kachuwa provided 100% of the capital to purchase a commercial building to help Upslope Brewing Company, a certified B-Corp craft brewery, to “gain control of its real estate destiny.” Upslope was originally enticed into the building by its former landlord, who offered low rent and a large renovation budget; however, after the original lease expired, the landlord increased rent significantly. Unfortunately, Upslope was unable to relocate elsewhere without significantly disrupting its business operations, and Upslope lacked sufficient capital to purchase the property on their own. After being approached by Upslope for assistance, Kachuwa purchased the property and offered Upslope below-market rent, long-term stability, and a shared ownership opportunity in the building without any capital requirement from Upslope. In return, Upslope agreed to co-manage the property and to pursue LEED certification via multiple renovations that include a solar PV system, EV chargers, LED lighting, and other energy and water efficiency improvements.

Leadership and Team

Cumulative Leadership Experience in Impact Investing:
30 years or more
Cumulative Impact Experience of Top Three Firm Leaders:
20 – 29 years
Blake Jones – President More Info

In addition to founding Kachuwa in 2005, Blake also co-founded four other cooperative enterprises: (1) Namaste Solar, an employee-owned cooperative; (2) Clean Energy Credit Union, a federally chartered credit union and a solely web-based financial services cooperative; (3) Amicus Solar Cooperative, a purchasing cooperative; and (4) Amicus O&M Cooperative, a resource-sharing cooperative. He is a 2010 Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year” award recipient and has a BE in Civil Engineering from Vanderbilt University.

Marilyn Waite – Vice President More Info

Marilyn currently leads the climate and clean energy finance portfolio at the Hewlett Foundation. She has worked across four continents in renewable and nuclear energy, startups, and venture capital and investment. Author of Sustainability at Work: Careers that make a difference, Marilyn is editor-at-large at GreenBiz for green economy ventures. She previously led the energy practice at Village Capital, modeled and forecasted energy solutions to climate change as a senior research fellow at Project Drawdown, and managed innovation projects at AREVA (now Orano). Marilyn holds a Master’s Degree with distinction in Engineering for Sustainable Development from the University of Cambridge and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering, magna cum laude, from Princeton University.

Alicia Robb – Board Director More Info

Alicia is the Founder and CEO of Next Wave Impact and a Managing Partner of two early-stage venture funds. She was previously a Senior Fellow with the Kauffman Foundation for more than a decade. Alicia received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She previously worked as an economist with the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and the Office of Economic Research in the Small Business Administration (SBA).

Percentage of Investment Professionals who identify as women:
50% or more
Percentage of Investment Professionals who identify as people of color:*
50% or more
Percentage of Senior Management Team who identify as women:
50% or more
Percentage of Senior Management Team who identify as people of color:*
50% or more
*People of color include: Black, Latinx, Asian, Native American/Alaskan Native, Pacific Islander, Middle Easterm and multi-racial Americans

Financial Performance

Target Financial Returns Relative to Benchmark:
Near-market Rates
Actual Performance of Impact Products/Funds Relative to Target Financial Returns in the Past Three Years:
Over-delivered compared to initial target returns
Financial Reporting Frequency to Investors or Donors
Annually

Impact Performance

Percentage of Total Assets Under
Management that are Impact Investments:
100%
Primary Impact Outcomes:
Addressing climate change and environmental issues
Conserving land, oceans, ecosystems and natural resources
Addressing racial inequities
Addressing gender inequities
Other: More inclusive, multi-stakeholder, and democratic economy, ownership, and workplaces
Secondary Impact Outcomes:
Creating jobs
Increasing access to education and improving educational outcomes
Increasing access to financial services
Value-added Services Offered:
Other: Connections to like-minded companies, potential peers, potential mentors

Investments systematically target companies where social and/or environmental impact is integral to the product/service being created:

We won't invest unless there's positive impact that specifically aligns with one or more of our cooperative's stated impact themes, and we only invest in "impact companies" which we define as creating positive impact via: (1) what it does (e.g. its products and services); (2) how it operates (e.g. its business practices and corporate governance); (3) who it benefits (e.g. its owners, employees, customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders); and/or (4) where it operates (e.g. its locality and/or the communities it serves).  

Investments systematically include social and environmental sustainability practices in the due diligence process:

Similar to our response to the previous question, we only invest in "impact companies" which we define as creating positive impact via: (1) what it does (e.g. its products and services); (2) how it operates (e.g. its business practices and corporate governance); (3) who it benefits (e.g. its owners, employees, customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders); and/or (4) where it operates (e.g. its locality and/or the communities it serves). So, considering this is an intrinsic part of our sourcing, screening, and due diligence.

Impact Tracking and Monitoring

Impact is Tracked:
Yes
Impact Verified by an Independent Third-Party:
Social and/or Environmental Impact is Reported to Investors and Donors:
Yes – to the public
Third Party Validations:
Member of Impact Capital Managers
Impact Frontiers Cohort Participant
Implement recommendations from Task Force on Climate Related-Financial Disclosure
Net Zero Assets Managers Initiative
Utilizes standardized impact metrics (e.g. IRIS+, GIIRS, etc.)
Participant on steering committees or leadership roles within impact industry associations
Publisher or contributor to industry white paper or other research in impact investing
None

Learn More

Key Contact Name: Blake Jones
Phone: 303-513-9594
Mailing Address:

4150 17th Street, Boulder, CO 80304, USA

Apply for the IA 50 2022

The application period to become an ImpactAssets 50 2022 Fund Manager will open in September 2021!
To stay informed on the application process, sign up here.

IA 50 2025: Apply for Consideration

The application period for the IA 50 2025 will open in September 2024. To stay informed on the application process, sign up here.