Hutchinson-based foundation leads the way as first investor from Greater Minnesota
HUTCHINSON, Minn.— Southwest Initiative Foundation (SWIF) board members approved a $250,000 investment in the Minnesota Impact Investment Initiative, making the Foundation the first investor from Greater Minnesota to join the collaborative, which combines social good with financial returns.
“Southwest Initiative Foundation is proud to be a part of this fantastic group of Minnesota foundations leveraging philanthropic capital to invest in small business and housing projects, which are critical to the communities in our region,” said Scott Marquardt, SWIF Vice President.
The Minnesota Council on Foundations (MCF) and several Minnesota foundations launched the Minnesota Impact Investment Initiative in April 2017. It was the first collaborative of its kind in the nation.
MCF members, including SWIF, have committed more than $22 million to the impact investing collaborative fund, part of RBC Global Access Management’s Community Access Capital. The Minnesota-focused fixed income bond fund invests in securities backed by affordable housing and small business projects throughout the state.
“Investing in our own communities makes a lot of sense, especially for foundations based in rural areas often overlooked by Wall Street. I’m thrilled to have our first investor from Greater Minnesota join the collaboration of prudent investors who are able to invest locally and receive the benefits of a nationally diversified fixed income fund,” said Susan Hammel, CFA and impact investing executive in residence at MCF.
MCF members— McKnight Foundation, Bush Foundation and the Otto Bremer Trust—are the lead funders in the impact investing collaborative. They are joined by the Minneapolis Foundation, Minnesota Council on Foundations, Mortenson Family Foundation, Sundance Family Foundation and Carolyn Foundation. The collaborative is open to any investor wanting to target its investments to Minnesota.
Southwest Initiative Foundation is a nonprofit connecting people, investing in ideas and building communities. Since its founding in 1986, SWIF has contributed more than $75 million through its grant and loan programs. Its business finance programs have helped start or expand more than 700 businesses, which have created or retained more than 8,600 jobs. SWIF has also established 26 community affiliates and more than 100 school, donor-advised and other funds, as well as 16 Early Childhood Initiative coalitions to support young children. SWIF has received 1,730 acres of farmland through our Keep It Growing℠ farmland giving program. In 2016, SWIF launched the Grow Our Own Initiative to align its work and ensure southwest Minnesota kids have the best start to life. Southwest Initiative Foundation is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To learn more, visit www.swifoundation.org.
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