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21:26 / 30 September 2020

CoFoF 3 – Looking back on a productive and socially distance conference

The presence of a select group of impact investors made the third edition of Co-financing Our Future a success in challenging times

CoFoF 3 – Looking back on a productive and socially distance conference

Macro-economic Insights
A macro-economic perspective of the impact of COVID-19 and insights into the governmental support packages of the EU and The Netherlands have been shared by Rens van Tilburg from the Sustainable Finance Lab.

What is the Role of the Government?
In three round table groups the role of the impact investment sector in rebuilding the economy was discussed.

To summarise, the central discussion points during the round table sessions were (surprisingly) related to the role of the government. What is the role of the government in (re)building a sustainable economy? How can the government create the optimal environment for impact start-up and scale-up companies to flourish? Is more governmental intervention needed?

First of all there was consensus with respect to the need for long term stability and consistency in national policy. Next, internalisation of externalities, e.g. CO2 tax, can create a level playing field for impact companies. The government can use tax schemes to increase tax on resources and lower tax on labour, incentivising to save resources and stimulate job creation.

The government can as well play a role in de-risking financial transactions with both start-ups and larger investments. VC’s and investors have a high risk appetite, however the government can play a supporting role e.g. setting up facility such as the seed capital policy for companies in a later growth stage. Together with the government the funding gap needs to be minimised.

The impact investment sector can take up the role of inspiring and including more traditional financiers in impact transactions increasing the scale of the impact investment sector.

Deal Sharing Opportunity
Last but not least, during the Deal Sharing Opportunity three impact investors took the stage who were looking for a co-funder on a specific transaction. Hopefully some matchmaking has been taking place during the Network Drinks!

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