This week on Masters in Business I sit down with Matthew Weatherley-White of the CapRock Group, whose specialty is “impact investing.”
I first read of White in a profile intriguingly titled The Most Fascinating Impact Investor You’ve Never Heard Of, in the midst of research into ESG (Environmental, social and governance investing).
White began his career at Smith Barney, where he was surprised to find the training program was about sales, not investing. Rising through the ranks, he tells how he first brought ESG investing to the firm. Brokers took to it (it was easy and required little work). But the program became a victim of its own success, and eventually, Smith Barney killed it.
In our conversation, we trace the history of impact investing, from the divestment movement of South African companies during the apartheid era, to anti-Vice, socially responsible investing (SRI), sustainable, and ESG. White expects the name “impact investing” will eventually go away as well, and discusses the changes in modern investor demographics. He thinks this drives the future in the direction of sustainable investing.
White also notes that the biggest proponents of the ESG style of investing are women and millenials. A $30 trillion dollar generational wealth transfer is underway, and demographics suggest much of it will find its way to these two groups, who tend to favor ESG investing.
All books mentioned in podcast can be found below.
Books mentioned by Matthew Weatherley-White in his MIB interview
• The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts (Amazon)
• The Book of Five Rings (Amazon)
• Meditations: Marcus Aurelius (Amazon)
• Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (Amazon)
• Reminiscences of a Stock Operator: With New Commentary and Insights on the Life and Times of Jesse Livermore (Amazon)
• All the Light We Cannot See (Amazon)
• The Buffett Essays Symposium: A 20th Anniversary Annotated Transcript (Amazon); see also The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America, Fourth Edition (Amazon)