Capital for Social Impact Series: Hong Kong


The Wharton Social Impact Initiative invites you to discover Hong Kong with us. Delve into discussion on impact investing trends, innovations, and strategies on Thursday, May 28, 2015.

At this latest event in the Capital for Social Impact Series, Jacob Gray and Nick Ashburn will lead a discussion with Eric Berkowitz and Francis Ngai on the latest market trends in impact investing.

This rapidly growing sector provides individuals, corporations, and institutions with more tools and opportunities to expand the positive impact of their investment and philanthropic dollars while still seeking appropriate financial returns. These impact investments are financing diverse efforts – from education technology, sustainable agriculture and financial services to innovations in healthcare and affordable housing.

In this exclusive event, speakers will delve in to industry- and sector-specific innovations and investments, and how individuals and organizations can implement and assess impact investing strategies in their own work.

When: Thursday, May 28, 2015

Where: The Hong Kong Bankers Club, 43rd-44th Floor, Gloucester Tower, The Landmark, Hong Kong

Cost: Free. Cocktails, beer, wine and canapés to be served.

For any questions about this event or to RSVP, please contact


About the Speakers

Jacob GrayJacob Gray is the Senior Director for the Wharton Social Impact Initiative. Gray leads the impact investing initiatives at WSII, drawing from more than 12 years of experience in impact investing and social enterprise.  He is the lead staff and member of the Investment Advisory Committee for the Wharton Social Venture Fund, a student-led impact investment fund. He managed Wharton’s role in FastFWD, an innovative collaboration that won $1 million from the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge in 2013.  Gray is no stranger to social enterprise in Philadelphia: he is a co-founder and General Partner of Murex Investments, an impact VC fund managing funds for financial institutions and high net-worth individuals.

NickHeadshotNick Ashburn is the Director of Special Projects for Impact Investing for the Wharton Social Impact Initiative.  Nick has also taught design thinking and social entrepreneurship at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Texas-Austin.   Throughout his career, Nick has worked on projects with major foundations, government agencies, large financial institutions and corporations on diverse projects ranging from innovative finance for social impact, design thinking for poverty alleviation, and education in developing countries.  Nick holds a master’s degree in international educational development from Penn and is fluent in German.  Fun fact: Nick co-hosts “Dollars & Change” on Business Radio powered by the Wharton School on SiriusXM 111.

Eric Berkowitz photo smallEric Berkowitz serves as the Chief Investment Officer of Impact Investing at Bamboo Finance, which is a commercial private equity firm specializing in investing in business models that benefit low-income communities in emerging markets with offices in Geneva, Bogota, Nairobi and Singapore. Bamboo Finance manages more than 280M USD of assets. Eric is based in Singapore and responsible for portfolio management of the Oasis Fund.  Eric has over fifteen years of international business and impact investing experience in twelve countries. Prior to joining Bamboo Finance, he was with the Acumen Fund in China focused on developing social enterprises which increase healthcare access. Previously he was a director at the China office of Tractus-Asia, where he assisted foreign companies making investment decisions and setting up operations in East Asia, was a consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers, and an new products development engineer at Cummins Engine Company.  In addition he has consulted on projects in Asia and the US in the areas of microfinance, financial services and business development. Eric holds a BS in Mechanical and Aerospace engineering from Princeton University and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business.

Francis NgaiFrancis Ngai is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Social Ventures Hong Kong (SVhk), Hong Kong’s first venture philanthropic organization dedicated to the support and nurture social innovation in Hong Kong. Since its establishment in 2007, SVhk has incubated over 20 portfolio ventures, among which, Mr. Ngai co-founded Green Monday (an environmental and green lifestyle initiative), Playtao Education (an afterschool education for grassroots students) and CookConnect (a food knowledge and resources platform). Other successful portfolio ventures include Diamond Cab (Hong Kong’s first barrier-free taxi service), Light Be (Hong Kong’s first affordable housing initiative for underprivileged families) and RunOurCity (community engagement through running). He graduated from the City University of Hong Kong and was conferred as an Honorary Fellow by the University in 2013. He was selected as one of the 100 Asia Pioneers by The Purpose Economy in 2014, a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum in 2012 and one of Hong Kong’s Ten Outstanding Young Persons in 2011.