Investment Portfolio For A Large Foundation

Constructing a direct investment portfolio for a large foundation

The program staff of a large regional foundation wanted to explore the mix of investments that it might make under an impact investing strategy. They wanted to see hypothetical investment s that complimented their grantmaking strategies. In addition they needed a “mini business plan” that laid out the investments, the expected financial returns, the probable mission impacts, and deal specifics.

For several states, the foundation shared both its grant-making priorities and a list of recent grantees. We helped them devise investment parameters – amount, duration, desired interest rate, desired impact. I then tested the appetite for these investments with selected foundation grantees, and with other companies and non-profit organizations in the foundation’s footprint.

I delivered a portfolio summary made up of detailed “sketches” of the individual investments. We presented both debt and equity instruments that the foundation could place in small businesses, growth companies, community loan funds, and affordable housing projects.

Along with these direct investments, I helped the program staff understand some conventional investments that the foundation’s investment advisors could place to more closely support the foundation’s overall mission.

The work we completed allowed program staff to present informed investment scenarios as part of the board’s consideration of direct/impact investment as a new investing strategy for the foundation’s corpus.

References to the principal contractor for this project, and to the foundation served, are available on request.

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