This week on Masters in Business I sit down with Matthew Weatherley-White of the CapRock Group on impact investing.

H/T Barry Ritholtz

I first read of White in a profile intriguingly titled The Most Fascinating Impact Investor You’ve Never Heard Of. The timing was auspicious; I was doing my own research into ESG Investing (Environmental, social and corporate governance) when I read of his work. (Because of this, you may find our conversation is perhaps chattier than usual — my apologies in advance).

White discusses his career beginnings at Smith Barney, where he was surprised to find the training program was about sales, not investing. Rising through the ranks, he tells how he first brought ESG investing to the firm. Brokers took to it, as it was easy and did not require a lot of work. It became a victim of its own success, and eventually, Smith Barney killed the program.

Matthew Weatherley-White
Image source: YouTube Video Screenshot

In our conversation, we trace the history of impact investing, from the divestment movement of South African companies during the apartheid era, to anti-Vice, socially responsible investing (SRI), sustainable, and ESG. White expects the name “impact investing” will eventually go away as well, and discusses the changes in modern investor demographics. He thinks this drives the future in the direction of sustainable investing. He notes that the biggest proponents of this style tend to be women and the millenial generation. A wealth transfer to those two demographics of about 30 trillion dollar is underway. White suggests much of it will find its way to ESG investing.

Masters In Business: Matthew Weatherley-White

 

All of the books mentioned are after the jump

Books mentioned by Matthew Weatherley-White in his MIB interview