Sir Ronald Cohen (Ronnie) has been a pioneer of impact investing for decades, and if that’s not interesting enough, he also has some great stories about migrating to England as a boy, before eventually getting a scholarship to Harvard and introducing Venture Capital to the UK.

But first, Ronnie’s bio, and be warned, it is impressive; Ronnie has been a venture capitalist, private equity investor, and leader of the global impact investing revolution. He was co-founder and Executive Chairman of Apax Partners, And today, he’s the Chairman of the Global Steering Group on Impact Investing (GSG) which followed the G8 Social Impact Investment Task Force.

He’s Chairman and co-Founder of The Portland Trust, co-founder of Social Finance UK, US, and Israel, and co-founder of Bridges Fund Management.

Plus, he’s written a book, it’s called Impact: Reshaping capitalism to drive real change.

On this episode…

I explored the many layers of Ronnie’s colourful life. He told us about how he views this term ‘impact’, and how it’s changed. But we then went deep on how impact measurement and transparency has the potential to change the way our economy functions, and, it’s about to become a reality, with the introduction of Impact-Weighted Accounts.

Plus, Ronnie told us about his experience travelling from Egypt to England as a boy. Getting to school speaking no English, and eventually studying at Oxford, and then getting a scholarship to Harvard.

My key takeaway this week…

“I don’t think the detail of our conversation is mainstream today, that is our challenge. But I do think the word impact has come to the mainstream. Everyone is using the word impact. They mean different things, but people mean different things when they say profit too.

I think we should push for transparency as a human right. We have the right to know.

We have the right to hold companies and investors to account for the harm they do, and to reward them for the good they do.”

Good Future’s Good Books

Impact: Reshaping Capitalism to Drive Real Change

By Sir Ronald Cohen

The Politics Industry

By Katherine Gehl and Michael Porter

“The book I’m reading at the moment is Michael Porter’s book, about the political system. And looking at how democracy is functioning. I would highly recommend it.”


Impact-Weighted Accounts

GSG Impact Summit

Impact Management Project

Apax Partners

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