In this episode, we interview Jon Bishop of Envest Microcredit.

Exploring the World of Impact Investing with John Bishop from Invest Microfinance

Introduction:

  • In this episode of the Values Investors podcast, we dive into the world of microfinance and impact investing.
  • Join Bill Holiday as he sits down with John Bishop from Invest Microfinance, an organization that’s making a positive difference in the world.
  • Episode number 34, brought to you by AIO Financial, a fee-only financial planning firm specializing in socially responsible investing at aiofinancial.com.

Summer Vacation Plans:

  • John shares a bit about his summer vacation plans, which involve a tour of southern Mexico by bus with his two little kids.
  • It’s shaping up to be quite an adventure.

Introducing John Bishop:

  • John Bishop is an experienced professional in the field of microfinance, with a long record at Invest Microfinance.
  • Invest is a microfinance cooperative that connects socially and environmentally conscious individuals and institutions with opportunities to support microfinance.

Expanding Impact:

  • John discusses the growth and expansion of Invest Microfinance over the years.
  • They have added partner institutions in several countries, with more on the horizon.

Diversification and Global Ambitions:

  • John explains their reasons for diversifying into different countries and regions, such as Central Asia.
  • The poverty in these areas is a driving force behind their expansion.

Supporting Microfinance Institutions:

  • The main focus for Invest Microfinance is on providing access to microfinance for smaller, geographically and economically isolated communities.
  • This often means partnering with microfinance institutions with smaller average loan sizes than the country’s average.

Challenges and Future Growth:

  • John outlines some of the challenges they face due to their size and the need for growth.
  • They are working on expanding their offerings to include debt options for qualified institutional buyers, such as mutual funds.

Accredited Investors and Future Goals:

  • Currently, Invest Microfinance is open to accredited investors only.
  • They are looking to grow and reach a scale where they can offer registered investments to non-accredited investors.

Measuring Impact:

  • The organization primarily focuses on providing access to microfinance, but measuring the impact can be challenging.
  • They are more interested in the number of jobs created and the impact on the people they serve.

Finding Partners:

  • John shares how they identify microfinance institutions for partnership.
  • While they initially relied on platforms like Mix Market, they now also work with umbrella organizations in various countries.

The Importance of Scale:

  • John emphasizes the need to grow and reach a certain size to make their offerings more accessible and cost-effective.
  • Registered offerings for non-accredited investors in the socially responsible investing space are their ultimate goal.

Contact Information:

Conclusion:

  • This podcast provides insights into the world of microfinance and the positive impact that organizations like Invest Microfinance can have.
  • It’s a reminder that impact investing can be a powerful tool for making the world a better place while achieving financial goals.

This podcast is for informational use only. This is not an appropriate investment for everyone. As with any investment, please read the prospectus and discuss it with your financial planner.