Andrea Armeni: Transforming Finance To Finance Transformation [Ep. 56]

Andrea Armeni is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Transform Finance, a field-building non-profit organization working at the intersection of capital and social change by building bridges between investors, communities, and other stakeholders. Transform Finance provides thought leadership and advisory services as well as innovative tools and investment structures that promote social change both in and through finance. Andrea is also the lead convener of the Transform Finance Investor Network, a community of practice for progressive investors that launched at the White House with an initial investment commitment of over $500 million and has since grown to $1.3 billion.

A prominent public speaker, he is recognized as a leader and innovator in the field of impact investing, particularly at the intersection of systemic change and social justice. Andrea combines a corporate law and finance background with a deep passion for and engagement with social justice activism. He has taught at the Yale Law School and at Université Paris Dauphine in France. He has been recognized as a BMW Foundation Young Leader, is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, and sits on the board of directors of the NGO Finance for Good Brazil and of CARE Enterprises, Inc., a business venture started by the international NGO CARE to fund transformative enterprises worldwide. He is based in New York, NY and San Francisco, CA.

In this interview we discuss:

  • Well-intentioned investors working with indigenous communities have often taken conventional approaches which fail to account for the importance of community and broader power dynamics and we discuss how to support investors to deploy capital in ways aligned w/ values and needs of community

  • Organizing asset owners around 3 principles: 1) deep engagement in affected communities 2) ownership and asset building opportunities in communities 3)fairly allocating risks & returns between investors and communities enabling their

  • How Transform Finance dovetails with other organizations within the broader ecosystem of impact investing

  • Navigating the tension and sometimes uncomfortable interstitial space between finance and social justice

  • Including finance among the set of tools one can use for social change in addition to advocacy and political action

  • Rebuilding the ship while we are sailing it as an analogy for transition to the next economy

If you only have two minutes, click here for a highlight from the interview

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Ryan Honeyman is a Partner at LIFT Economy and author of The B Corp Handbook: How to Use Business as a Force for Good (Berrett-Koehler Publishers). LIFT Economy is an impact consulting firm whose mission is to create, model, and share a locally self-reliant economy that works for the benefit of all life. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @honeymanconsult or email him