Acumen Blog

Kashf recognized by CGAP

I’m happy to share with you the good news that Acumen Fund investee Kashf was awarded Merit Recognition in CGAP’s 2006 Financial Transparency Awards. This means a lot for the microfinance organization as well as for Pakistan. We are proud to be working with Roshaneh, Sadaffe and their team. This award is also a step forward in the important move toward benchmarks for a sector balancing social returns with financial sustainability. [Read More]

Signs of an exciting trend at the Harvard Social Enterprise Conference

This past Sunday, March 4, nearly 1,000 people gathered to learn and exchange ideas at Harvard’s business school conference on “Social Enterprise.” The phrase is sufficiently broad to cover a wide range of issues, from socially responsible business to business-like social change and everything in between. The aim of the conference, according to its co-chairs, is to engage a broad set of institutions across sectors to “turn dreams into reality,” and the theme of bringing pragmatic approaches to achieving lofty goals for social justice was woven strongly throughout the day’s discussions. Victoria Hale exemplified this in her opening keynote when she talked about the way that her non-profit pharmaceutical company was engaging with corporations, foundations and governments to bring critical health products to the 10 million who die needlessly every year from preventable diseases. [Read More]

Our community in the news

There were two great articles about members of the Acumen community recently. This article in The New York Times highlights the work that Voxiva, one of our investments, is doing in Rwanda to leverage technology to improve healthcare delivery. And the current issue of BusinessWeek features TED, the conference run by Chris Anderson and owned by the Sapling Foundation (a major contributor to Acumen Fund). [Read More]

Partners in venture philanthropy

This article in the LA Times a few weeks ago gives an overview of venture philanthropy that highlights the work of our partner Jeff Skoll and the Skoll Foundation, Generation Investment Management (which was founded and run by Acumen Fund board member David Blood), and Jed Emerson, who advises Acumen Fund on metrics. The community of individuals and organizations focused on market-oriented approaches to change is growing and pushing the boundaries of what is possible. [Read More]

Acumen Fund investees in the media

Acumen Fund investee Tralance Addy was featured recently in Business 2.0 for WaterHealth International‘s efforts to tackle one of humanity’s biggest problems. And in a terrific piece in The New York Times, Nicholas Kristof discusses the importance of social entrepreneurs and pays tribute to investee Roshaneh Zafar of Kashf.  It is exciting to see this growing level of interest in these entrepreneurial approaches to social change. [Read More]