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New York Life launches $1bn impact investing fund

Friday, April 30, 2021
Opalesque Industry Update - New York Life has launched a $1 billion impact investment initiative with the aim to address the racial wealth gap by investing in underserved and undercapitalized communities over the next three years with a focus on supporting small businesses, affordable housing, and community development. The company will partner with diverse asset managers, federally chartered community development financial institutions (CDFI), and other mission-driven organizations to amplify their efforts on the ground.

"The societal events of the past year have stirred an urgency to address America's racial disparities, which the Covid-19 pandemic has only made more glaring. Now, more than ever, is the right time to make impact investments that drive change," said Tony Malloy, chief investment officer at New York Life. "We are focused on investments that seek to not only deliver meaningful societal impacts, but also provide the potential to generate market returns to help build and sustain positive economic outcomes in underserved and undercapitalized communities over the long term. That's why, for our initial investment, we are partnering with Fairview Capital, one of the premier players in this space."

New York Life has collaborated with Fairview Capital to commit $150 million to invest in diverse and emerging fund managers. Through this collaboration, the company expects to make 15 venture capital and growth equity limited partnership commitments over the next three years. Each commitment would support dozens of businesses, resulting in several hundred businesses impacted overall.

"Small businesses are the lifeblood of most communities and must thrive for those communities to prosper. Venture capital and private equity investments generally provide a gateway to entrepreneurship, especially for minority entrepreneurs who are often held back by limited access to funds," said Laurence Morse, Fairview Capital co-founder and managing partner. "Institutional investors like New York Life who share our values, goals, and vision help fill the gap by partnering with up-and-coming diverse asset managers who often support a higher proportion of companies with diverse ownership and leadership teams."

To oversee the company's impact investment focus, New York Life has appointed Managing Director Martin King as head of impact investments. Mr. King will continue to oversee $70 billion of investment grade fixed income assets and will add the impact investing responsibilities to his existing role. He will develop and oversee New York Life's long-term impact investment strategy to develop large-scale solutions and investment structures that aim to deliver broad and inclusive economic outcomes linked to job growth, health and wellness, and personal and household advancement.

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