【Comments of Signetories（Financial Institution)】
Established its first fund in 2012, ANRI is a seed stage focused venture capital firm in Japan with an AUM of 35 billion yen. We have led the Japanese startup industry in promoting D&I, through initiatives such as increasing the ratio of female entrepreneurs in our current running ANRI IV fund. On a personal level, I support NPOs and other social sector organizations to solve critical social issues. Investments in startups that solve environmental issues are accelerating around the world as we move toward a more decarbonized society. As environmental and social issues also emerge in Japan, we will continue to generate impact by solving these issues through our investment activities.
ARUN, with its vision “A society where all members live and enjoy the full range of their talents and abilities, regardless of background and economic status”, has been pursuing social changes by supporting social entrepreneurs in developing countries, through building a participatory social investment platform since 2009. In collaboration with signatory members, we hope to contribute in developing and expanding Impact-driven Financing, leveraging our expertise and network.
We are delighted to be part of the Initiative with like-minded financial institutions. In January this year, we published a corporate message as our purpose in society, “Creating a sustainable future through the power of investment”, as part of our strong commitment to integrating sustainability into our management. We believe that this is the very essence of our “impact orientation”. However, as an asset management company, it is difficult for us to take on this major challenge on our own, and it is extremely important that the entire investment chain, including asset owners and market participants, work together to develop an information disclosure platform for measuring impact. We hope that this declaration will accelerate the pace of this effort.
We believe in the potential of science and technology to make the world a better place. Through our incubation investments in technology start-ups, we have aimed to create new industries through the commercialization of technology seeds. All our portfolio companies are working every day to create a positive impact on society and the environment. Our participation in the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative reaffirms our ambition to work with entrepreneurs to solve social problems.
BIG Impact Inc. is a new venture capital firm launched in August 2022 with the concept of “advancing social change in Japan with the power of startups.” Our mision is to actively support startups that create a large positive impact on society through their activities, such as solving social issues and realizing sustainability. Through signing the “Impact-Oriented Finance Declaration”, we seek to promote the formation of a startup community with all of you to turn this initiative into a bigger movement.
Cadira Capital Management is an investment management company established in Japan in 2022, with the mission of “Connecting the Investment Chain and Beyond”. Cadira is a word meaning ‘chair’, reflecting our desire to always have a place for our stakeholders. We manage our listed Japanese equity investment strategy with the aim of solving global environmental and social challenges while delivering high quality returns for our clients. As an impact startup, we will also contribute to the further development of listed equity impact investment strategy.
In the healthcare sector, where we invest, the market itself has a structure in which businesses must produce outcomes or they will be weeded out and will not be able to generate sustainable profits. In other words, in order to succeed in the healthcare sector, it is necessary to manage the social impact of the business, which is a prerequisite for maximizing financial returns over the medium to long term. Capital Medica Ventures is therefore pursuing impact-oriented investment activities with a long-term perspective in order to maximize profits.
For Credit Saison, based on our management philosophy of being a “Leading-edge service company”, we have been striving to contribute to the realization of a prosperous and sustainable society by leveraging our unique know-how, management resources, and the knowledge of our employees. While developing our global business, achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through financial inclusion is a fundamental theme of our business, and impact investment is our core efforts. We would like to share our knowledge with the signatories of this Declaration, while making every effort to contribute to the development of society and resolving issues.
Since the launch of its debt-based crowdfunding service in 2014, CROWD CREDIT has run the service under the principle which we make investment which pursues both economic return and social return. In 2018 we started to provide impact investing opportunities which we commit to measure social impact created by the investment funds and which we lend to microfinance institutions in emerging countries or renewable energy businesses which give access to electricity to people in not-yet-electrified areas, or gender lens investment opportunities. As of April 2022, nearly 20% of the investment funds run by CROWD CREDIT are social impact investment funds. CROWD CREDIT commits to keep creating investment funds which pursue to create social impact in the areas of 17 targets shown in SDGs.
Dai-Ichi Kangyo Credit Union is a financial institution that aims to contribute to sustainable regional and community development by supporting people who are engaged in local business and living in a spirit of mutual aid. Since the activities of those who are working to solve environmental and social problems are becoming increasingly important in their regions, we believe that supporting and encouraging them financially to make a difference will lead to the realization of sustainable regions and communities.This Initiative is in line with the direction we are aiming to take, and we have joined the list of signatory financial institutions in supporting its aims. We will continue to focus on the activities that we are required to carry out to create an impact on the community, and we look forward to working together with the signatory financial institutions to create a greater impact.
Daiwa Securities Group Inc. has recently signed this declaration as a comprehensive securities group for the first time. We have been focusing on promoting and expanding sustainable finance for many years, and we understand the importance of visualizing our impact on the environment and society and clarifying the direction of our responsibility. As a financial institution, we believe that we have infinite potential to contribute to solving social issues, but there is a limit to what one company can do. By signing this declaration, we hope to collaborate with other financial institutions to create a new impact-oriented capital cycle.
We have launched the Open Network Lab & ESG I Investment Limited Partnership (in short, “Earthshot Fund”) as a fund for ESG-focused startups in July 2021. Collaborating with Open Network Lab, the seed accelerator program of Digital Garage, Inc.; Earthshot Fund invests in both Japanese and international ESG-focused startups and supports the portfolio companies including their ESG management. As we further invest, nurture, and support social entrepreneurs who create global inflection points; we will work together with the signatories of this Declaration and strive to create a significant impact on solving social issues.
With the mission of “creating businesses, changing society,” DI is promoting creation of new businesses. Last year, DI established Asia’s largest social impact bond (SIB) fund and is working to solve social issues faced by local governments through a new results-based system that utilizes the know-how and funds of private companies. DI is also promoting investment in venture companies, mainly in India, that contribute to solving social issues in developing countries. Based on this declaration, DI will continue to promote investment activities that will create further environmental and social impact.
I would like to welcome the launch of the Initiative as a cross-industry impact-oriented initiative among domestic financial institutions. It is a great honor to be part of this Initiative. Since its establishment in 2006, our company has been investing in and supporting growth of venture companies that are dedicated to business creation and innovation to solve social issues in the environment and energy fields. Our 4th fund, which was established in June 2018, evaluates the social impact created by investee venture companies from both quantitative and qualitative perspectives, and issues an impact report compiled in each fiscal year. By participating in this Initiative, I hope that an opportunity to share information among not only venture capitals but also among other financial institutions will be created, domestic impact finance will be expanded, and its information be disseminated overseas.
Since its establishment in 2004, Fast Track Initiative, Inc., with its mission of “Capital for Life” has consistently worked to enrich life and wellbeing through investment in startups specializing in the bio- and health-tech fields. We strongly believe that the rapid delivery of medicines and healthcare solutions created by the startups we invest in, will contribute to global health and lead to the realization of an inclusive society where no one is left behind. By collaborating with signatory institutions that play a crucial role in the investment chain, we hope to make a significant contribution and a lasting social impact to the growing innovation ecosystem, originating in Japan.
Funds, Inc. has been operating a lending-based crowdfunding business since 2019 with a mission “provide the best answers to future uncertainties”. We have been dedicated to offering stable opportunities for asset formation and supplying growth capital through debt financing. In 2022, we began offering lending-based funds targeting other companies operating microfinance institutions in emerging countries, with a total fundraising value reaching 2.4 billion Japanese yen as of September 2023. Additionally, we are actively involved in providing lending-based funds for real-estate project which fulfills energy saving performance evaluation criteria. Funds, Inc. remains committed to solving social issues through debt financing for the future.
Future Venture Capital’s mission is to ” build companies that will last 100 years”, and we aim to create a society that generates innovation for a sustainable future. Future Venture Capital’s flagship initiative, the ” Regional Revitalizing Fund “, which aims to sustain and vitalize regional economies by partnering with regional financial institutions and local governments across Japan, has a total investment value of 10.9 billion yen and has invested in approximately 290 companies. We have also seen an increase in the number of consultations on the establishment of funds with a clear theme, such as social issues or SDGs, and we believe that there is a growing momentum to provide funding to businesses that seek to solve local issues and the importance of impact as an outcome. With the signing of this initiative, we will accelerate further impact investment across Japan.
The mission of the KIBOW Impact Investment Fund is “to create businesses and transform society together with entrepreneurs who solve social problems and create hope”. We accelerate the creation and transformation of society by creating three flows of funds, through impact investing (money), investee human resources (people) and best-practice know-how (knowledge). Through the signing of this Declaration, we will promote the creation of new mechanisms for impact investment.
GLIN Impact Capital is an impact investment fund established with the mission of “reimagining capitalism,” with the hope of creating a society where social issues are solved autonomously along with the development of financial capitalism, and with the belief that the most effective way to achieve this goal is to promote impact investing. We will make an utmost contribution to the spread of impact investing in Japan by leveraging the knowledge of the latest overseas practices and the expansive network in the global impact investing community including Harvard University.
We are deeply grateful for the opportunity to participate in the co-creative Initiative to address social challenges with other financial institutions under the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative. Innovative solutions are needed to quickly address longstanding social challenges. We have invested in a number of deep-tech startups that are using the technology to solve some of the world’s biggest challenges. We’ve helped them grow and create impact by providing hands-on support from our dedicated team. In collaboration with other signatory organizations, we will continue to contribute to solving social issues more effectively through implementing IMM practices.
Globis Capital Partners (GCP) is a venture capital firm that has been investing in startups in Japan since 1996. As the balance between environmental and social value and economic value becomes even more important, we believe that startups lead an important role in solving social issues. GLOBIS has already been implementing KIBOW Social Impact Investment, which utilizes venture capital methods for social entrepreneurs as a methodology for solving social issues, since 2018, and has already formed up to its second fund. As an enabler of startups, GCP will make further contributions to the creation of next-generation industries and the resolution of social issues by signing on to this initiative.
Our company group, which operates a one-stop platform from the construction of the “Digital Securities” platform to product development, sales, and management, believes that corporate social responsibility not only brings sustainability to society but also fosters personal growth and happiness. Leveraging our extensive product development capabilities, we are committed to offering investment products that reconcile “high returns” and “social contribution,” accessible to a wide range of investors, from retail to high-net-worth individuals and corporate clients. Together with like-minded financial institutions who have endorsed this declaration, we aim to pursue true prosperity on both economic and spiritual fronts while working towards the realization of the Earth’s natural environment and a sustainable society as it should be.
As an investment company based in Kumamoto, Higin Capital Co., Ltd. manages several funds to meet various corporate needs such as venture business, regional revitalization, and business succession. We also promote an ongoing venture creation program in collaboration with the Higo Bank, Ltd., Kumamoto prefectural government and Kumamoto University, as industry, government, academia, and financial institutions work together through the comprehensive collaboration agreement to engage in the initiatives to create new venture companies and industries in Kumamoto. Its investment activities are not merely for financial gain, but to contribute to the local community of Kumamoto and to bring about significant change from Kumamoto to the rest of the world. As we are submitting the signature of declarations, we aim to create a sustainable future for our regions and communities through our business of creating and discovering companies that will have a greater impact on society and the environment, and by supporting their growth.
Based on our management philosophy “Be a trustful partner for people, always being close at hand and endeavoring to protect their well-being”, we are working to achieve the SDGs and solve social issues through warm-hearted investment and lending. Impact-oriented investment and lending is at the heart of our efforts, and by practicing it, we will fulfill our social responsibility as a life insurance company and further strengthen our ties with our stakeholders. We also look forward to working with the signatories of this initiative to develop the impact-oriented investment and lending on a self-sustaining and sustainable basis and to make it a major financial trend.
Japan Post Investment Corporation is an investment management company established in February 2018 by the cooperation of Japan Post Bank Co., Ltd and Japan Post Insurance Co., Ltd, with the mission of “solving various social issues and creating a sustainable and vibrant society through the power of long-term investment”. In April 2022, Japan Post Investment launched a fund dedicated to invest in companies and businesses that contribute to creating social impacts towards revitalizing regional economies and achieving the SDGs. Following the Investment Philosophy based on the belief that the future is always result of current decision making, we will contribute to the establishment of a sustainable society by generating economic returns and social and environmental change through this impact-oriented investment, and at the same time, we hope to contribute to the development of impact finance in Japan.
Our mission is to “transform society through its research, inventions, and innovations” , focusing on seed and early-stage lead investments. The Keio Innovation Initiative (KII) has expanded its scope to include R&D startups that address social innovation through digital technology and solutions to issues in the medical and health fields and is promoting investment activities to solve socio economic matters in Japan and abroad. In support of this declaration, we will continue contributing to solving social issues more appropriately by implementing IMM practices.
Kyushu Mirai Investments Co., Ltd. was established in April 2022 as a group company of the Higo Bank, Ltd. and currently operates an investment advisory business for institutional investors. We position impact investment (the intention to actively address social and environmental issues) as one factor in our investment decisions, and by engaging with companies through our constructive dialogue, we work together with regional clients to help solving social issues. Working together with all those who share the same aspiration under the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative, we strive to realize a sustainable and vibrant regional community.
Under the management philosophy of “Peace of mind, forever”, Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company (the “Company”) sets the Vision toward 2030 of “ The most accessible, industry leading life insurer capable of “Wellness for People, Vitality for Communities”. The Company strive to contribute to the realization of a sustainable and hopeful society in ways that create shared value and extend it to future generations with stakeholders including customers, local communities and fellow workers. We, as a responsible investor, aim to create and enlarge a social impact through promoting impact investing that can generate both social and economic value sharing knowledge with those who go along with the initiative for the purpose of contributing to a sustainable growth of Japanese economy by facilitating a circulation of management resources.
Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corporation conducts sustainability activities, with “Trust”, to resolve environmental and social issues and create a “safe and affluent society.” We believe that by enhancing our impact investment measurement and management processes, we will be able to demonstrate a high level of expertise in the solutions for our clients’ assets. And it will also help us to act as a responsible trustee who will lead to a better future through our investment actions. Therefore, we have joined this Initiative. We will collaborate with other signatories to promote activities aimed at developing impact-oriented investments and loans, and work with a wide range of stakeholders to resolve environmental and social issues.
Our corporate vision is to “become the most trusted and beloved company as the best partner for alternative investments in Japan.” We endorse the promotion of impact investment, which aims both to achieve financial returns and to solve environmental and social issues, and we signed this initiative to meet the expectations of our stakeholders for better investments and to realize a sustainable society. As an alternative investment professional in the Mitsui & Co. Group, we will focus on the promotion of impact investment and actively address various issues in cooperation with our stakeholders, for the purpose of realizing a sustainable and prosperous society.
The promotion of impact-driven financing will help all firms to grow in the medium-to-long term. As such, it forms a central part of the role demanded of financial institutions. With more attention being paid to the environmental and social impact of corporate activities in recent years, impact visualization will serve to enhance corporate value. I am grateful that Mizuho has been given the opportunity to respond to this challenge as a member of the Initiative. Mizuho has played a pioneering role by participating in Japan’s first social impact bond issuance and by investing in social investment funds, for example. While utilizing the knowledge gained through these experiences to contribute to the Initiative, Mizuho will work hard to build a more harmonious relationship between the environment, society and business.
Through MUFG Bank’s issuance of green bonds, we have contributed to showing their effects on the environment and society and supported the creation of positive impacts. We have joined this Initiative to identify business opportunities and enhance risk management methods that contribute to solving environmental and social issues, and to fulfill our role as a financial institution as expected by society. Based on the Initiative, we will continue to pursue activities for the development of impact-oriented investing and lending in cooperation with other signatory organizations while maintaining our focus on environmental and social impact, and will aim to contribute to solving environmental and social issues in a wide range of fields.
We would like to express our sincere gratitude for signing Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative.We will continue to work with other signatories to make our society better through finance. Since our foundation in 2000, we have been committed to funding businesses in frontiers where the access to traditional finance is difficult. It has been 20 years of gratitude, surprise, and excitement to see many Japanese individual investors investing in solving social challenges with empathy. We are confident that the participation in this Initiative will enable us to deliver our efforts, in proper way, to more investors and businesses that need funds. We will work even harder to contribute to the creation of impacts all over the world collectively with Japanese investors.
Nihon PMI Partners is a private equity fund that has established the HealthCare Investment Limited Partnership Fund for activating the healthcare community based on the concept of PMI (Post Merger Integration), and DX. It is urgent to reorganize and merge businesses at stake in the pandemic and succession for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises that support the healthcare industry. Our fund consists of experienced members in the healthcare industry. Besides, all of us are highly motivated to accomplish the mission of creating change in the healthcare community through the power of an investment. Through this agreement, furthermore, we are committed to creating an impact to solve social issues and develop society.
Based on our fundamental management principles of “contributing to the stability and enhancement of people’s lives,” we have been striving to develop our business with contributing to the creation of a safe and secure sustainable society through our entire value chain. As an institutional investor, we have been encouraging companies to create sustainability impact through ESG investment and finance to solve environmental and social issues. We have already been measuring and managing impact through fund investments. Going forward, the Nippon Life Group, including its affiliated asset management companies, will actively work together to create sustainability impact through all activities, including investment and finance, engagement, and collaboration with other investors, in a broader range of assets. By sharing our knowledge with the members of this initiative, we will strive to spread and expand impact-driven investment and finance, and contribute to the realization of a sustainable society.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of our founding, and as a venture capital firm, we have been proud to have indirectly contributed to technological innovation and social change by supporting the success of many of our portfolio companies. However, with the acceleration of environmental and social problems such as climate change, environmental destruction, declining birthrate, aging population, and the depopulation of rural areas in Japan, we believe that a different approach will be required. This is why we decided to join the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative. Our efforts have just begun, but we are delighted to work with the Initiative’s signatories to promote impact-driven finance for the next 30, 50, and 100 years.
ON & BOARD is a VC fund that was established in October 2023 with the mission of solving the global and Japanese challenges of 2050 through the provision of risk money. At a time when the world and Japan face multiple challenges, it is essential not only to achieve financial indicators but also to implement impact-oriented initiatives with an eye toward the future. As a fund that invests in startups, we will work together with the supporting companies to realize a world in which “solving problems will become a further growth engine.”
We are very pleased to sign the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative. Since our foundation in 2020, we have been making impact investments in emerging countries such as Cambodia and creating new local businesses based on our philosophy of “Bringing sustainable well-being to all mankind”. To realize our philosophy, we believe it is essential to co-create higher quality impact investments through evaluating the impact of our investments and impact management with our partner companies, rather than merely achieving financial returns. Taking the opportunity of signing this initiative, we will work together with other institutions to contribute to overall development of impact-oriented investment.
We were founded in Kyoto in 2016 with the aim of creating a flow of funds that stimulates social innovation and contributes to the formation of sustainable and flexible local communities. Through our social investment platform “en.try”, we provide a mechanism for local residents, local businesses and financial institutions to support and participate in essential local businesses through social investment. From 2020, we are also collaborating with Ritsumeikan University to establish and manage the Ritsumeikan Social Impact Fund, which totals 1.5 billion yen. We will continue to take on the challenge of creating impact in local communities and creating the necessary funding mechanisms to achieve this.
We are very delighted to sign the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative together with Japan’s leading financial institutions. Since the establishment of our Real Tech Fund in 2015, we have been a frontrunner in investing in and nurturing R&D-based startups that aim to solve societal and environmental issues, both domestically and internationally. In 2021, we established Japan’s first impact investment fund specializing in deep-tech. Impact investing in the startup industry is still in its infancy, and through this initiative, we are committed to increasing the number of deep-tech startup supporters as well as contributing to the development of the impact investing industry in Japan and strengthening its global presence.
Impact orientation is an approach in which a financial institution supports the innovation and good business of a company by sympathizing with the aspiration of the company in which it has invested to solve social problems. In order to promote impact orientation, we must first convey to society our own vision of what society should be and how we want it to be, learn from actual experiences through dialogue with the companies we invest in, deepen and evolve our dialogue even further, clarify the causal relationship between the business activities of the companies we invest in and the social impact they create, and ensure that their efforts to solve social issues are sustainable. Through our impact orientation, we are committed to working towards a better and more prosperous society.
If each company strives to become meaningful to society and to engage in activities with positive impact on society, then it will generate enormous energy as a whole. Shinsei Bank Group will further deepen “Redesigning Finance” initiative and impact finance by participating in this Initiative, and contribute to growth of impact-oriented finance together with financial institutions which share the same spirit.
The realization of sustainable regional economies and communities is the very mission of the shinkin bank industry, and shinkin banks support regional economies and communities together with their communities based on the fundamental principle of mutual support. Shinkin Central Bank, as the central bank for shinkin banks, works together with shinkin banks to solve various environmental and social issues including new challenges such as climate change from both financial and non-financial perspectives. Impact-orientation aligns with our activities, and Shinkin Central Bank will aim to realize sustainable regional economies and communities by promoting investment and lending that create positive impacts on environmental and social issues in cooperation with other signatory organizations through this Initiative.
SIGMAXYZ Investment, Inc. is an investment company under SIGMAXYZ Group, and has been focusing on venture and growth investments with Regenerative & Wellbeing as its domain since established in April 2021. We also support the growth and corporate value enhancement of our portfolio companies with the group’s consulting team. We state “realizing a society where financial, empathetic and common social capitals are in harmony” as one of the values we provide. We believe that the Impact-Oriented Finance Declaration points in the same direction as we do, and we are pleased to participate in the Declaration. We will collaborate with like-minded people to realize a new way of investing that contributes not only to solving social and environmental issues, but also to creating the society of the future.
We founded SIIF Impact Capital, Inc. in September 2022 with a powerful vision: ‘Creating real system change through Impact Investing and Good Capital.’ Our mission is to contribute to the growth of the start-ups we invest in and to foster a better society. As we completed the first close of the SIIFIC Wellness Fund, our inaugural fund, in June 2023, we are deeply honored to join like-minded colleagues in signing this declaration. With corporate goals aligning closely with societal objectives and impact investing gaining recognition in government policies, we recognize the immense role we play in this transformative era. We eagerly look forward to generating collective impact together through the avenue of impact investing. Thank you for the privilege of being part of this endeavor.”
Since the launch of our first fund in 2016, Spiral Capital has been committed to startup investment and open innovation support with the vision of promoting industrial transformation in Japan and realizing a prosperous and sustainable society. In light of the various social issues that have become increasingly serious in recent years, we feel that it is our mission as a VC to pursue environmental and social impact, which led us to the signing of this declaration. We hope to contribute to a movement for environmental and social impact in Japan through collaboration with other signatory institutions.
Spurcle’s mission is to “creating a new global economic cycle”, with the aim of realizing a sustainable society in the Tohoku region, one of the most challenging regions in Japan. We invest in and support start-ups in the Tohoku region that are working to solve a wide range of social issues. The Tohoku region is facing a number of urgent issues, such as a declining population and low productivity compared to other regions, and we believe it is important to create social impact as an outcome other than financial return. With our participation in the Impact-driven Financing Initiative, we will continue to accelerate further impact investing in the Tohoku region.
Management Policy of Sumitomo Life is to contribute to the social and public welfare as our corporate purpose. Based on this, we are working to solve social issues from the perspective of both life insurance provider and institutional investor to contribute to a healthy and long-lived society. As a life insurance provider, we support the enhancement of the health of people, especially through the provision of “SUMITOMO LIFE Vitality”, a health-promotion type insurance. Additionally, as an institutional investor, we are currently promoting responsible investment and recognize that creating impact is particularly important. We will actively participate in the activities of the Initiative and aim to create even greater impact through the investment.
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation has a vision of being “A trusted global solution provider committed to the growth of our customers and advancement of society.” We have contributed to the resolution of social issues and the realization of a sustainable society through various initiatives. However, there are still many social issues to be solved, and hence, the role required as a financial institution is growing and expanding. Through the “Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative” and together with its signatories, we will strive to solve environmental and social issues, aiming for an era in which society and people’s hearts are sustainably enriched.
We are very pleased to join Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative. Our vision is to be the best asset manager that contributes to Quality of Life. To this end, we as professionals will not only provide the highest quality investment management services through actions that put our customers first, but we will also strive to realize a diversified and sustainable society through our investment activities. In addition, we aim for collective growth based on respectful understanding of all our stakeholders, and we will create a flexible work environment that allows all employees to reach their potential. This is our company’s mission, and it is very impact-oriented. We will strive to realize a sustainable society with a long-term unwavering focus on impact.
The Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Group aims to leverage the diverse, flexible functions of trusts along with analysis which incorporates scientific knowledge to become a crossroads for the businesses, investors, individuals, and other constituents of today’s economy, and make sustainable society a reality. We believe that this will bring about a virtuous circulation of funds, assets, and capital, stimulate asset formation of citizens and sustainable growth of businesses, and contribute to growth of the Japanese economy which has remained stagnant for so long. We believe that impact-oriented initiatives are the precise embodiment of our Group’s Purpose, which is “Creating new value with the power of trusts and let prosperous future for our clients and society bloom.”
Tajima Shinkin Bank has 28 branches in Hyogo and Kyoto prefectures, mainly in the Tajima area of northern Hyogo. The Tajima area, our main area, is a typically depopulated area where the population has been declining since 1947. While the population and industry of the region is slowly declining due to depopulation and the declining birth rate and ageing population, the recent Covid-19 disaster has put a downward pressure on the region. As a regional financial institution based in such a region, we believe that it is very important to be impact-oriented in order to create a sustainable circulation of funds that can autonomously solve social and environmental problems. With the signing of this declaration, we will further promote our efforts as a regional producer and take up the challenge of measuring and managing our impact.
taliki aims to create a world where everyone is glad to be born by increasing the number of players who solve social issues and supporting them. We have accompanied the launch of more than 190 social issue-solving businesses and invested more than 200 million yen. However, there are still many social issues that remain in this world, and provided resources to solve them are not enough. We hope that our participation in this declaration will lead to more widespread finance aimed at solving social issues.
We have revised our group vision to “Protect and improve the well-being of all ” in the new Mid-term Management Plan starting from 2021. As a key premise to achieve this vision, the realization of a sustainable society is essential, and it is necessary that more financial institutions take practical actions to solve environmental and social issues with “impact- driven” attitudes. We have been making impact investments, and will continue to expand and measure positive impacts of the investment portfolio. By sharing knowledge with those who support this Initiative, we will make a significant contribution to solving global environmental and social issues.
The Higo Bank Corporate Pension Fund, the corporate pension fund of The Higo Bank, Ltd., has been managing its pension assets from an ESG perspective, including signing the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) in September 2021 to ensure long-term sustainable growth of pension assets. By submitting the signature of declarations to Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative, we intend to fulfill our fiduciary responsibility by including an environmental and social impact creation to our current investment activities to further improve the profitability and maintain the stability of the corporate pension fund.
With the 10-year vision developed based on the corporate management philosophy and purpose to evolve into a “Regional Value Co-Creation Group” that creates a better future together with our customers, communities, and employees, the Higo Bank, Ltd. has set the target of the group’s cumulative ESG investment and loan of 1 trillion yen by 2030 to finance renewable energy and the region’s key industries of agriculture and tourism, and supports medical and welfare-related industries as well as projects that contribute to climate change mitigation and biodiversity conservation. Furthermore, we are making group-wide efforts to promote sustainable finance, including positive impact finance. Together with all those who support the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative, we are committed to further promoting impact investment and creating a virtuous cycle that integrates the environment, society, and the economy toward the realization of sustainable local communities.
Kyoto Shinkin Bank was the first financial institution in Japan to introduce the concept of a “community bank” in 1971. Our goal under the SDGs is to create a prosperous society by promoting financial inclusion for local small, medium and micro enterprises and start-up businesses, and we aim to create sustainable, socially-minded communities. To this end, we have established the Social and Sustainable business standard in collaboration with the Yunus Social Business Research Center to foster and support businesses that go beyond the financial realm and work to solve a wide range of social issues. By providing engagement and support to local businesses through the certification, and by incorporating the impact of micro, small and medium-sized businesses on the local community into our lending decisions, we will work to ensure that 80% of our clients are ESG-conscious businesses within 10 years.
We have defined our Purpose as “Dedicated to sustaining all life – Work together with our stakeholders to foster the AFF industries and to create a prosperous future for food and lifestyles, and thereby contribute to a sustainable global environment –.” and have been promoting initiatives to create and visualize positive and measurable impacts on environmental, social and economic issues through our investment and financing activities such as impact investment and positive impact finance. We intend to further enhance these initiatives through participation in this declaration and cooperation with other signatories.
Shizuoka Financial Group is committed to solving social issues through financial services, aiming for the sustainable growth of local communities based on our corporate philosophy, “expand dreams and affluence with our community”. In January 2021, We became the first Japanese bank to provide Positive Impact Financing to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in order to support small scale local companies that are proactively addressing the SDGs. We will continue to contribute to the creation of sustainable local communities by establishing an impact-driven mindset in the region through finance.
T. Rowe Price was founded in 1937 in Baltimore, Maryland, USA and today we still stand by the same mission “To help our clients achieve their long-term financial goals”. With that objective, we have been delivering mid to long term financial products, understanding the long-term sustainability of the companies in which we invest, to all of our clients from individual investors to institutional investors. We also believe it is important for clients to be able to make wise financial decisions to achieve their long-term financial goals and, thus, we have been supporting various financial education initiatives under SDG#4 goal. In recent years, we have launched Impact strategies where clients can both achieve financial returns and positive impacts to environmental and social issues. T. Rowe Price will continue to strive to deliver positive impacts to our clients and our community through our investment management services.
Venture Lab Investment is an independent VC that actively provides growth support from the start-up, seed and early stages to venture companies that are expected to make a significant contribution to society. Its strength and feature is its ability to provide support in collaboration with its parent company, Venture Lab, which conducts third-party evaluations of technology, patent value and business growth potential. To date, it has promoted projects with a high social impact, such as the formulation of standards for the ‘evaluation of hospitals that are good places for female doctors to work’ and support for the launch and operation of NPOs that support this. We will continue to promote activities that have a positive impact on society by utilising our strengths in ‘evaluation criteria development’, ‘third-party evaluation implementation’ and ‘connoisseurship’.
We are a private equity fund with approximately JPY 80 billion under management, and our Healthcare New Platform fund, which we launched in September 2021, aims to solve the social challenges of expanding access to healthcare, increasing healthy life expectancy and reducing the risk of infectious diseases. We have created a company of our own, providing not only the funds but also the necessary human resources and technology, and taking the initiative in business development while being deeply involved in management. Therefore, we believe that if we develop and implement a business plan that is impact-oriented, we can maintain consistency as a company. As a fund, we have a responsibility to deliver financial returns (performance) to our investors. However, along with this financial return, we also have a responsibility to ensure that the companies we invest in have a mechanism to make decisions that are consistent with the SDGs and other social goals. Based on the hypothesis that impact investing is the best way to fulfill this responsibility, we hope to make a significant contribution to solving global environmental and social issues through impact-oriented investment activities.
Yamaguchi Capital manages “Regional Future Co-Creation Search Fund”, which aims to solve local business succession issues by introducing talented management candidates in urban areas to local businesses. The fund aims not only to solve business succession issues through investment, but also to achieve business growth and sustainable regional development by supporting investee companies together with stakeholders. As a leader in “locally based private equity business”, Yamaguchi Capital will conduct investment activities with a focus on resolving regional issues and achieve both social impact and economic return.
The ZUU Group’s management purpose is to “eliminate the opportunity gap and create a world where all can continue to take on challenges.” In order to freely release accessibility to capital that accelerates challenges and eliminate the various opportunity gaps that exist in the world, it is necessary to accept diverse values and promote investment and financing initiatives that focus on social impact. We hereby declare that we will aim to solve social issues by providing higher value-added financial services and promoting financial education initiatives in Japan through discussions with those who support this declaration.
【Comments of Signetories（Non-Financial Institution)】
In order for companies to create a sustainable society by solving environmental and social issues while balancing with economic value, we believe it is essential to measure and visualize the impact on comprehensive value and to realize impact-driven finance in which investments and loans are made accordingly. ABeam Consulting will create new value together with various stakeholders as a partner for Transformation, utilizing non-financial information analysis and impact-weighted accounting, both of which we have been working on previously, and contribute to the creation of a sustainable society.
It is a great honor to become part of the Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative this time. CSR Design Green Investment Advisory, Co., Ltd. is an independent ESG consultancy firm and policy think tank, which has specialized in real estate and financial sectors. Since our establishment in 2010, as our mission we have been seeking to realize real estate and local society generating positive impact utilizing finance/investment and policy/system as driving force. With our expertise, we are looking forward to contributing to advancing this initiative and promoting impact investment.
While it is transitioning to the post-capitalism, companies are under pressure to transform their management style and business models with the keywords of CSV (Creating Shared Value), SDGs, and sustainability. Not only competitive strategies to pursuit corporate profits, but business management is also required to integrate social value creation these days. In this moment of change, visualizing the impact of corporate activities as well as promoting/ investing businesses to solve social issues will not only meet the social request but also contribute to the enhancement of corporate value. As a partner of impact driven companies, we are committed to promote impact-driven financing through providing professional services.
R&I has been meeting the needs of the capital market through the credit rating business in which, as Japan’s premier rating agency, it has a track record spanning more than 40 years. We have also played a pioneering role in the external assessment of ESG finance since we provided our external assessment for the first domestic green bond issued by a Japanese company in 2016. While addressing increasingly diverse ESG financing instruments, we support the promotion of impact investment and lending by financial institutions from the standpoint of an external reviewer. We are committed to contributing to impact-driven financing by strengthening collaboration with other signatory organizations and continuing to offer trusted evaluation services.
We commit to the success of this declaration by strengthening the investment readiness of entities with impact-driven finance. To accelerate impact-driven finance, support to both supply and demand side needs is crucial – promoting financial institutions’ capabilities of managing the impact measurement, while also strengthening the investee entities’ ability to conduct accurate impact analysis. As a think tank and consulting company of the SMBC Group, we provide impact analysis and disclosure support to entities to increase their presence in the impact-driven finance space.