Rockefeller, MacArthur Foundations Launch Private Capital Initiatives for SDGs
Photo by Lynn Wagner
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Two US-based philanthropic trusts, the Rockefeller Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation, announced a joint initiative to direct impact investment funds toward sustainable development.

Each foundation is contributing USD 30 million in start-up financing, resulting in a total of USD 60 million for initial investments.

The UN estimates that an additional USD 5-7 trillion is needed to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

12 March 2019: Two US-based philanthropic trusts, the Rockefeller Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation, announced a joint initiative to direct impact investment funds toward sustainable development. Each foundation is contributing USD 30 million in start-up financing, resulting in a total of USD 60 million for initial investments. The UN estimates that an additional USD 5-7 trillion is needed to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

The MacArthur Foundation’s Catalytic Capital Consortium (C3) aims to raise up to USD 150 million from private capital markets. The Foundation explains that the capital is being directed to projects that: demonstrate a powerful use of catalytic capital, span emerging and developing markets, and align with the SDGs. The Rockefeller Foundation and the Omidyar Network, a philanthropic investment firm, have joined C3 as partners in this mission.

The USD 60 million allocation from MacArthur and Rockefeller is the C3’s first investment, which will go toward the Rockefeller Foundation’s Zero Gap grant portfolio. The Rockefeller Foundation launched ‘Zero Gap’ in 2015, which seeks to fill the gap in financing for the SDGs. The Rockefeller contribution will be managed by its impact investment management platform, Rockefeller Foundation Impact Investment Management. The platform aims to tap into mainstream markets and investors. With the creation of the Impact Investment Management platform, the Foundation will be able to aggregate and manage capital in traditional areas of focus: food, health, power, jobs and innovation.

Announcing the creation of the platform, the Rockefeller Foundation called for building ambitious partnerships spanning the public sector, the private sector, philanthrophy and civil society. Projects previously supported through Zero Gap have been Sixup, an educational project to help promising students attend college through student loans, and the Forest Resilience Bond, which has provided working capital to the US Forest Service and other groups working on forest restoration in the US. [Rockefeller blog]

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