Acumen Launches New U.S. Portfolio to Tackle Poverty in America
On May 16, 2016, Acumen, the nonprofit global venture fund, announced the launch of Acumen America, a portfolio of American social enterprises focused on tackling poverty within the U.S. After Acumen’s founding in 2001 and over $101 million invested in nearly 100 innovative enterprises addressing the global problems of poverty in Africa, South Asia, and Latin America, Acumen is bringing its impact investing model to the U.S. The aim of Acumen America is to help address the biggest issues facing the nearly 47 million people living in poverty at home, the U.S.
In conjunction with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Barclays, and the Hitachi Foundation, Acumen is building a portfolio of U.S. companies with a focus on three interconnected sectors that Acumen believes are critical to helping low-income Americans move out of poverty: health care, workforce development, and financial inclusion.
Acumen hopes to invest in ventures that address the social determinants of health, as well as increase patient engagement, improve care coordination, drive access to health care via new models, improve accessibility, and reduce health-relate debt burdens. Acumen’s first health investment is Healthify, a tech company helping case managers connect patients to critical social services to improve health. In addressing workforce development, Acumen’s first investment is WorkAmerica, a company focused one expanding access to employment in skilled trades for students from community college and technical institutions. Meanwhile, Acumen’s financial inclusion portfolio is currently under development, but hopes to invest in companies that provide access to low-income, underbanked and unbanked Americans. To learn more about Acumen’s launch of Acumen America, read the press release here.