Fund manager publishes self-critiquing review, urges peers to follow suit

Snowball Impact Management (Snowball), a B-Corp certified investment fund, has released its Impact Report – a rare example of a fully independent assessment of an impact management framework being made public.

Snowball’s ambition is to change the way investment decisions are made so that their impact on people and the planet is considered alongside financial returns. Snowball previously published two award-winning reports sharing the impact methodology it uses to assess its investments – and is now turning the lens on itself. 

The assessment was conducted in early 2022 by The Good Economy, a leading independent impact advisory firm dedicated to enhancing the contribution of business and finance to an inclusive and sustainable economy.

The Good Economy found Snowball “has developed a market leading approach to embedding impact considerations throughout the investment process”, and that Snowball’s industry collaboration, transparency and openness serves as a model for others in the investment sector. 

The assessment also highlighted areas for further improvement. For example, it recommends Snowball introduce stronger measurement of indirect systemic change; and places greater emphasis on stakeholder engagement amongst its fund managers. The report also questioned whether Snowball could link the way its team was incentivised with the positive impact achieved. 

Daniela Barone Soares, CEO at Snowball, said: “We are used to reading press releases and company statements that contain only self-congratulatory good news. But part of the reason Snowball was founded was to demonstrate that business as usual no longer cuts it. 

“There is so much to be proud of in this report. We are publishing the detailed findings to hold ourselves accountable, as we believe that’s the only way to inspire continued improvement both in our own organisation, and in the wider financial markets. With scepticism rampant and impact- and green-washing a regular and concerning reality, we need accountability and transparency.” 

Alexander Hoare, Chair, Snowball, said: “Many of the problems in the news – heat waves, our reliance on fossil fuels, the cost-of-living crisis – come down to the failings of investment activity. Investment no longer serves society, but there is a better way. We are holding our own feet to the fire, and we invite other asset managers to step-up and do the same.” 

Sarah Forster, CEO, The Good Economy adds: “Snowball takes a serious and rigorous approach to impact management, and ranks among a small cohort of investors globally who can evidence how they place impact and financial returns on an equal footing. 

“One fund manager we interviewed stated that Snowball is ‘beating the drum’ for good impact practice. We hope this report plays a valuable role as part of that ongoing endeavour.” 


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