Outlook 2015: Impact investing to reach record heights

Christina Alfonso, founder and chief executive of US investment advisor Madeira Global, expects corporate commitments to surge in 2015.

“Due to the limitations that plague governments and NGOs in driving social change, and the access to immediate information as a result of the digital revolution, private investors, corporations and leaders are injecting capital into impact investments and will continue to do so in 2015 and beyond,” states Christina M. Alfonso, founder and chief executive of Madeira Global, a New York-based investment and advisory firm servicing qualified investors and institutions in the area of impact investing. “Impact investing is one of the most viable solutions to global social and environmental challenges,” she adds.

In December, Madeira released its 2015 Impact Outlook for the marketplace. The firm asserts that corporate commitment to impact investing is set to reach record heights this year due to the combination of heightened corporate social responsibility programs and a return to the laws of fundamental investing into companies with strong environmental, social and governance practices.

The milestones seen in 2014, such as Prudential committing to build a $1 billion impact investment portfolio by 2020, will serve as precursors to the 2015 impact investment landscape, Madeira says.

Madeira Global also predicts that investment in solar and other forms of renewable energy will increase in 2015 as the cost of production decreases, despite lower oil prices. The US made major strides in the past few years to become more energy efficient and reduce its dependency on foreign supply, the firm notes. Most recently, the U.S. Department of Energy's Loan Program Office broke even on their loans to the industry.