Ford Foundation hopes to spur impact investment with $1 billion commitment

Xavier de Souza Briggs, vice president of the Ford Foundation's Economic Opportunity and Markets program, speaks at a panel. Photo by: Paul Morigi / Brookings Institution / CC BY-NC-ND

The Ford Foundation’s recent decision to commit $1 billion of its $12 billion endowment to impact investments was years, even decades, in the making. The move represents the foundation’s long-honed belief that impact investing can build social change. It is also an intentional “signal to other foundation and institutional investors” that now is the time for mission-related investment, the foundation said.

“When you ask me how do you come to this [decision], the roots are quite deep,” Xavier de Souza Briggs, the vice president of the Ford Foundation's Economic Opportunity and Markets program, told Devex. “It begins with trying to solve some tough problems in which the private sector and private capital necessarily play an important role and looking for more flexible ways to stimulate that role.”

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About the author

  • Saldiner adva

    Adva Saldinger

    Adva Saldinger is an Associate Editor at Devex, where she covers the intersection of business and international development, as well as U.S. foreign aid policy. From partnerships to trade and social entrepreneurship to impact investing, Adva explores the role the private sector and private capital play in development. A journalist with more than 10 years of experience, she has worked at several newspapers in the U.S. and lived in both Ghana and South Africa.