Living Cities’ Capital for the New Majority team is thrilled to announce that Living Cities and the Catalyst Family of Funds have been selected to the ImpactAssets 50 (IA 50) for the eleventh consecutive year and named as an Emeritus Impact Manager for the second time.
“Now in its eleventh year, the ImpactAssets 50™ is the most recognized free database of impact investment fund managers,” according to ImpactAssets. “This annually updated list is a gateway into the world of impact investing for investors, financial advisors and philanthropists. The IA 50 offers an easy way to identify experienced and emerging impact fund managers and is intended to illustrate the breadth of impact fund managers operating today, though it is not a comprehensive list. Fund managers selected to the IA 50 demonstrate a wide range of impact investing activities across geographies, sectors and asset classes.”
Each year, a diverse group of impact investment funds are recognized for demonstrating a commitment to generating positive social, environmental, and financial impact.
The distinction of Emeritus Impact Manager is awarded to impact fund managers who have achieved consistent recognition on the IA 50, demonstrated resilience within the impact investing market, and created systematic opportunities to generate positive impact. This designation is especially meaningful as Living Cities gains traction in the development of its third investment vehicle to support diverse fund managers.
The Catalyst Family of Funds
The Catalyst and Blended Catalyst Funds are structured debt funds that advance Living Cities’ programmatic initiatives. Through the Catalyst Family of Funds, we have deployed approximately $74 million and leveraged over $1 billion in additional financing. The Catalyst Fund (2008 vintage) was a 12-year fund that has recently repaid in full to its investors and which helped scale Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), explored the potential of Pay for Success / outcomes-based financing, and backed timely, innovative lending models around foreclosure mitigation in the wake of the Great Recession, energy efficiency, and equitable transit-oriented development. Our second fund, the Blended Catalyst Fund (2015 vintage) is focused on closing the racial wealth gap in the U.S. by lending to and investing in intermediaries as well as companies that 1) are managed and/or owned by people of color; 2) actively find alternative ways of creating income and wealth-building for people of color, such as through alternative credit models and fund structures and 3) build the ecosystem for entrepreneurs and fund managers of color in U.S. cities.
In addition to Living Cities’ acknowledgement by the IA 50, two of the Blended Catalyst Fund’s portfolio investments were recognized as “Emerging Managers” of note. These are:
The Blackstar Stability Distressed Debt Fund: The Blackstar Stability Distressed Debt Fund seeks to promote wealth creation for people of color through homeownership and to undo the harm of predatory lending practices and products. These practices have rendered such wealth accumulation by certain groups difficult. The fund purchases and restructures distressed mortgages and land sale contracts with the aim of preventing potential foreclosures and stabilizing communities.
1863 Ventures: 1863 Ventures is a hybrid fund focused on closing the friends and family financing gap for high-growth, early-stage businesses founded by entrepreneurs of color by providing flexible, culturally competent, non-extractive capital. 1863 utilizes Revenue-Based Financing as a promising alternative to venture capital and bank loans.
Mission Driven Finance, another Blended Catalyst Fund portfolio investment, was also recognized by the IA 50.
Mission Driven Finance: “Mission Driven Finance is an impact investment firm dedicated to building a financial system that ensures good businesses have sufficient affordable access to capital. Built from the ground up with a single purpose—to make it easy to invest in your community—all of our funds and structured products are designed to close financial gaps that will close opportunity gaps.”
We are honored to be considered among such an extraordinary group of leaders in the impact investing field this year, and look forward to continuing to share our thoughts and lessons learned as we continue towards our north star goal of closing racial income and wealth gaps in American cities.