Congratulations to IE Brown 2017 Andreas Koester and Brad Kimler on the adoption of their IE Brown Key Reflection Project in the latest UBS report on impact investing.
We have all grown accustomed to financial firms investing our savings in asset classes that align with our appetite for risk and growth. Our trust in these investment groupings lies in the industry’s lengthy and rigorous commitment to the development of performance and fiduciary standards.
As awareness increases about the impact of investment on society, a new customer segment has emerged for investments that consider not only goals for growth but concerns about the impact of those investments on society. But without cross-industry, shared fundamentals for how we talk about, measure and manage impact, these types of investments have failed to gain traction despite market demand.
IE Brown 2017 alumni Andreas Koester, CIO Global Asset Allocation at UBS Wealth Management, and Brad Kimler, Minuteman Health Board of Directors and former Fidelity Investments EVP, saw this market failure, not as an obstacle, but as an opportunity. Over a glass of wine one night, Koester and Kimler discovered a shared passion around impact investing. They agreed that critical infrastructure was needed to support this nascent asset class and decided to jointly focus their IE Brown Key Reflection Project (KRP) on the integration of impact into traditionally shared fundamentals of risk and return.
The framework they constructed served as the basis for a report co-published by UBS and Bridges Impact+ for the Impact Management Project – a collaborative of over 700 organizations sparked by the United Nations Strategic Development Agenda for 2030. Titled The Investor’s Perspective: An illustration of how we can build portfolios that match impact and financial goals with intentions and constraints, the report presents a roadmap for merging impact into asset allocation and a series of model portfolios that illustrate different combinations of impact and financial goals.
Speaking of the overall value of the program, Koester said,
“IE Brown was exceptionally valuable to me as a professional and as a person. It gave me the opportunity to explore new, high-growth business segments that go beyond ROI. It also gave me the tools to maximize my ability to lead teams and be an entrepreneurial force at UBS. Most importantly, I gained an amazing cohort of colleagues and friends who I can count on for advice as I continue to explore new business fronts into the future.”
“I signed on to this program because I was intrigued about the notion of linking humanities more closely to a business curriculum. Our KRP topic was a perfect way to demonstrate how this conceptual framework can be made practical in today’s global environment. I met some great people and learned much more than I had imagined in a very short time.”