MIINT Competition Brings 10 Business Schools to Compete for $50,000 Opportunity

The Wharton Social Venture Fund competed in the MIINT competition finals, pictured here in 2014.
The Wharton Social Venture Fund competed in the MIINT competition finals, pictured here in 2014.

Bridges Impact+, the advisory arm of specialist fund manager Bridges Ventures, and Wharton Social Impact Initiative will host the fourth annual MIINT competition for student-led impact investing teams this Saturday at Wharton.

The MBA Impact Investing Network and Training (MIINT) is a global program dedicated to training the next generation of impact investors. Under the program, students from top business schools in the U.S. and Europe learn to source and diligence impact investments, and then compete at a live pitch event. The company presented by the winning student team has the opportunity to receive an investment of up to $50,000, which is made by an individual independent investor.

“Opportunities for practical experience in impact investing are rare. The MIINT process gives students a chance to interact with real CEOs of real companies as if they were investors,” says Brian Trelstad, a partner at Bridges Ventures.

The MIINT Program simulates a traditional early-stage investment fund and trains students on how to source, analyze, and conduct due diligence on early-stage companies that create positive social or environmental impact at the same time that they offer attractive investment opportunities.

“Demand for impact investing content is huge on campuses around the world,” says Jacob Gray, Senior Director of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative.  “Our goal in co-producing the MIINT is to provide the best experiential education available in the field of impact investment.  And Wharton thinks this kind of experience should be open to many students from many universities.”

Each team creates an investment thesis – focusing on investments in specific sectors such as the environment, education, financial inclusion, and healthcare. The program takes students through a rigorous due diligence process, and each team narrows its selection down to one company that the team feels is a strong investment opportunity. Students present multiple companies to campus-based judging committees, who then select the most promising combination of impact and return to be presented at the national finals.

“Our clients have expressed interest in aligning their values with their investments,” says Surya Kolluri, Managing Director, Policy and Market Planning, Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Wealth and Investment Management.  “We therefore think what Bridges and Wharton have designed with the MIINT provides extremely relevant training for the next generation of investment talent.” Bank of America Merrill Lynch is a proud sponsor of the 2015/2016 competition.

MIINT-brand-final-mark-750pxIn the first round of the final competition on April 18, student teams from each of the 10 schools will present their final analysis and selection to an independent investment committee comprised of leaders in impact investing from across the country.

Three to five student teams will advance to the final round, during which the committee will ask each team in-depth questions about their chosen companies.

Ron Moelis, the CEO of L and M Development Partners, a New York-based real estate development company that focuses on community investment and development in urban areas, will evaluate the winning company with the goal of making an investment of up to $50,000 through the Moelis Family Foundation. Moelis is passionate about impact investing and the educational opportunity that MIINT affords business school students.

“My family’s foundation has been backing the MIINT for three years now,” says Moelis.  “The student excitement for this topic is infectious and represents a significant shift in the way MBAs think about investing.”

In addition, Liquidnet, the global institutional trading network, will make a $25,000 investment – pursuant to its independent investment review – into the runner-up investment opportunity through the Liquidnet Impact Fund, its donor advised fund.

“Liquidnet is focused on accelerating the practice of impact investing, and the MIINT creates a great talent pipeline for this emerging field,” says Brian Walsh, Liquidnet’s head of Corporate Impact.

Student teams, comprised of approximately 200 MBA students, have been participating throughout the academic year.

These teams represent the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago, Columbia Business School, David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah, Darden School of Business at University of Virginia, Haas School of Business at the University of California-Berkeley, Harvard Business School, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, ESSEC Business School in Paris, and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

When: April 18, 2015

Where: The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Who: MIINT Participants, Students, Presenters, Faculty/Staff, IC Panel

The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania does not provide any endorsement, either implied or explicit, in companies that participate with WSVF, Locust Walk Impact Partners, or OurCrowd.  Neither the University of Pennsylvania, the Wharton School, nor student members of the Wharton Social Venture Fund are investors in participating companies.  Companies run by current students of the University of Pennsylvania are not eligible for review by WSVF.