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Australian business and community leaders join forces to champion impact investing

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Australian business and community leaders have joined forces to champion impact investing.

Led by the Australian Advisory Board on Impact Investing, a delegation of 25 leaders met in Canberra on Wednesday with Ministers, other Parliamentarians and senior officials.

The group will also help launch a Parliamentary Friendship Group on Social Impact and Investment.

Australian Advisory Board Chair, Rosemary Addis, Peter Hunt AM, Dr Simon Longstaff AO, David Crosbie, Louise Sylvan, Fabienne Michaux and Robert McLean AM were among those in attendance.

The delegation aimed to highlight impact investing – investments that set out to deliver a measurable social or environmental impact along with a financial return – as a powerful tool to drive better outcomes and help governments meet structural budget challenges by mobilising more private capital for public good.

“We need innovative approaches to solving old problems and greater accountability for the outcomes achieved. Impact investing is already operating here and around the world in areas as diverse as education, aged care, employment, health, social housing and clean energy,” said Addis.

“We stand at an inflection point in the market’s development. To scale up these opportunities will require leadership across society. We recognise that creating prosperous future for Australia is a responsibility to be shared by all sectors.

“The government has a critical role to play, although can’t be expected to have all the answers or all the capital. We are here with an offer of a constructive partnership.” said Addis.

The delegation proposed a unique partnership with the government to create an independent investment institution that connects organisations with capital, and drives broader participation and innovation in delivering social impact: Impact Capital Australia.

“This institution will change the game,” said Addis.

“Impact Capital Australia will drive growth, diversity and innovation.

“A strong partnership with the private and community sectors will ensure a multiplier effect for Government contribution, in both capital and societal impact.”

Peter Hunt AM, Chair of Greenhill Australia and Grameen Australia said, “It would be incredibly exciting to see a breakthrough like Impact Capital Australia to really accelerate our progress towards the potential of impact investing. It is important that we invest in strategic infrastructure like this to take up the opportunities for what this kind of social and financial innovation could mean for Australia,”

“This is about changing the way we address social issues in Australia. Impact Capital Australia will bring together the best minds in the finance sector with innovative community organisations to make a real difference to the kind of society we live in,” said David Crosbie, CEO of the Community Council for Australia.


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