iOS app Android app

David Bank
David Bank is Editor and CEO of Impact IQ, a new media platform for social finance. Impact IQ delivers deals, data and insight for investors seeking social and environmental impact along with financial returns.

Most recently, David was a vice president of (formerly known as Civic Ventures), deploying his journalistic and entrepreneurial skills and experience to advance innovative ideas and people making a difference with encore careers.

In his pre-encore career, Bank was a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, covering the Internet, Microsoft and the software industry. His book, Breaking Windows: How Bill Gates Fumbled the Future of Microsoft (Free Press) was named one of the "Best Business Books of 2001" by the Harvard Business Review and He launched the national philanthropy beat at the Journal and pioneered coverage of West Coast philanthropy, giving-while-living, and the new crop of billionaire advocates.

Previously, he covered Silicon Valley for the San Jose Mercury News and L.A. City Hall for the Los Angeles Daily News and was a foreign correspondent based in Seoul, South Korea. He has also filed from Tibet, the Philippines, Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia, El Salvador, and Mexico. His magazine articles have appeared in Newsweek, Wired, Mother Jones, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Ode and Out.

Bank was a 1996 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. He has an M.S. in journalism from Columbia University and a B.A. in politics from the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Entries by David Bank

Investing in Private Health Care for All in India

(0) Comments | Posted April 9, 2014 | 3:07 PM

India is in the midst of the world's largest experiment in democratic elections, with more than 800 million people eligible to vote in its current parliamentary elections.

Impact investors are monitoring what may be an even more interesting experiment. The efforts by India's new crop of health care entrepreneurs to...

Read Post

Save the Oceans, Feed the World, Make a Profit?

(0) Comments | Posted March 18, 2014 | 7:50 PM

Impact IQ -- What's good for the fish is good for the fishing communities -- and for impact investors.

That's the thesis of three new vehicles for investing in sustainable fisheries that will be tested in the Philippines, Chile and Brazil over the next two years...

Read Post

D.Light Raises $11 Million to Light up Developing World

(0) Comments | Posted February 25, 2014 | 5:23 PM

Like Facebook's $19 billion acquisition of WhatApp, the announcement that d.light design has closed $11 million in new financing is a signal of Silicon Valley's increasing interest in technology's role in meeting the needs of emerging middle-class consumers in the developing world.

Investors in d.light, which makes affordable solar lanterns,...

Read Post

Q&A With Morgan Stanley: Clients Demand Impact Investment Options

(0) Comments | Posted November 25, 2013 | 3:41 PM

Impact IQ - Watch this space: Major financial institutions are starting to compete for clients who want to mobilize their capital for social and environmental solutions

Morgan Stanley this month announced a five-year goal of $10 billion in client assets for its Investing with Impact platform, which...

Read Post

Stocking the Investment Pipeline in Sustainable Seafood

(0) Comments | Posted November 22, 2013 | 11:49 AM

There's now a good answer for impact investors who wonder where to look for deals in sustainable seafood and ocean preservation: Fish 2.0.

Last week's two-day event to cap the year-long business competition showcased 20 finalists and semi-finalists with a wide range of seafood businesses from distribution and marketing systems to tracking...

Read Post

Impact Investment Performance: Tiptoeing Toward Transparency

(1) Comments | Posted November 21, 2013 | 12:12 PM

The recent release of details about the performance of several impact investment portfolios and funds is another step toward answering the question more and more investors are asking: Is impact a boost -- or a bust -- in terms of financial returns?

"Institutional investors aren't going to move on impact...

Read Post

Impact Fund Invests in Aquaculture to Preserve Oceans

(0) Comments | Posted November 19, 2013 | 3:25 PM

Impact IQ -- Within a few years, most of the fish we eat will be farmed, not caught.

That could be a boon for already over-stressed oceans. But the worldwide explosion of aquaculture since 1970 has left its own trail of environmental destruction, from toxic concentrations of...

Read Post

Women Are Hot...Investments

(1) Comments | Posted October 24, 2013 | 4:48 PM

Janet Yellen, Christine Lagarde and a handful of U.S. senators notwithstanding, women are still underrepresented in the world of finance.

So it was a reversal earlier this month to be one of the few men among nearly 100 women investors, wealth advisors, bankers and analysts gathered to reshape global financial...

Read Post

From Margins to Mainstream: World Economic Forum Tackles Impact Investing

(0) Comments | Posted September 18, 2013 | 8:08 PM

From the folks who brought us Davos comes a new report that cautiously concludes that impact investing is ready to break out from its niche and capture the imagination -- and the assets -- of mainstream institutional investors.

The World Economic Forum used its access to senior decision-makers and...

Read Post

Giving Voice, and Business Advice, to African Fish Farmers

(3) Comments | Posted September 4, 2013 | 4:56 PM

The "aha" moment came during a simple phone call from Alloysius Attah's aunt. If Ghanaian women, like the cassava farmer who raised him, were using basic mobile phones, Attah realized Farmerline could help them increase their yields and their incomes.

Since the spring, Attah and Farmerline have used...

Read Post

Generating 'Non-Energy' to Drive Revenues from Efficiency

(0) Comments | Posted August 15, 2013 | 11:05 AM

Energy efficiency should be the low-hanging fruit of carbon-reduction schemes, with clear and reliable paybacks. Instead, the bountiful harvest has been tantalizingly out of reach, for lack of sufficient upfront capital.

Now a new financing structure may finally get the players lined up and the dollars flowing. The premise of...

Read Post

Q&A With Fish 2.0: Beyond Seafood Business as Usual

(1) Comments | Posted May 20, 2013 | 7:08 PM

Converting fish waste into food. Powering fish farms in the desert. Generating value from oceans of data.

I caught up with Monica Jain recently to learn what business opportunities are emerging from the Fish 2.0 contest she has organized to connect investors with opportunities in the $390 billion seafood...

Read Post

Fish 2.0: Investing in Sustainable Oceans and Fisheries

(3) Comments | Posted January 31, 2013 | 5:24 PM

The sorry state of the world's oceans is creating investment opportunities in a range of enterprises that are pioneering the sustainable fishing industry of the future.

The Pacific bluefin tuna population is down 96.4 percent. More than 85 percent of fisheries are being...

Read Post

Seeding Startups at the Base of India's Pyramid

(0) Comments | Posted January 3, 2013 | 12:30 PM

A team of technology veterans has raised $8 million for one of the first funds making early-stage investments in companies meeting the basic needs of low-income customers at the base of India's economic pyramid.

The commitments, including from billionaire venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, will launch the Unitus Seed...

Read Post

Yellow Brick Road to the Impact Economy

(2) Comments | Posted December 18, 2012 | 3:51 PM

I'm from San Francisco, not Kansas, but when I stepped off the elevator at the Lexington Avenue headquarters of Bloomberg LP, it felt like Oz.

Around the soaring sixth-floor atrium, no walls or receptionists guard the newsrooms. Senior executives hold meetings on a Big Pink Couch. Billionaires like Eric Schmidt,...

Read Post

At 20, Investors' Circle Gets Its Groove Back

(0) Comments | Posted October 15, 2012 | 12:49 AM

Investor's Circle, the 20-year-old network of mission-driven angel investors, has survived the long economic slowdown and a rough organizational patch and appears poised to have its best year since 2006.

That's good news for social ventures, for whom early-stage capital remains tough to obtain, despite the new conventional wisdom around...

Read Post

'Impact Alphas' Stake Their Claim

(0) Comments | Posted October 11, 2012 | 1:38 PM

Word on the Street: When pitching the big-money players, don't lead with "impact." Try "alpha" instead.

That was the message from pension-fund advisors to leaders of the impact investing community who were gathered in San Francisco for the annual SOCAP conference.

"If you want a check, say, 'We're going to...

Read Post

E+Co Avoids Liquidation, Barely, and Emerges Persistent

(1) Comments | Posted October 3, 2012 | 9:24 AM

Millions of dollars in bad loans have driven E+Co, one of the pioneers of impact investing, effectively out of business, offering a cautionary tale for those seeking to provide financing for large numbers of small and growing businesses as a strategy to accelerate sustainable development in low-income countries.

Read Post

Rockefeller's High-Impact Investment

(2) Comments | Posted September 19, 2012 | 3:36 PM

The provenance of the term "impact investing," according to the official founding myth, was a 2007 gathering of leaders on Lake Como, high in the Italian Alps, at Bellagio, the Rockefeller Foundation's spectacular retreat center. The group reconvened the next year, and Rockefeller's board approved a $38 million impact investing...

Read Post

Bridging the Gap to an Encore Career

(0) Comments | Posted March 21, 2012 | 4:20 PM

After decades in real estate, Dave Hughes was ready for his encore career. He applied for jobs at nonprofit organizations near his new home in eastern Oregon, hoping to capitalize on his years of church volunteer work. He got no offers.

"We needed the additional income," he says. "My wife...

Read Post