Vision
“Maximise the leverage of business and finance for sustainable development.”

Mission
“Dedicated to building capacity for sustainable investment in emerging markets.”

Rationale
VantagePoint Global (VPG) believes that business and finance offer the highest leverage for enhancing sustainable development.

 

In emerging markets social, environmental and geopolitical issues pose the greatest challenges as well as provide the biggest opportunities for creating sustainable return on investment. Economic projections estimate that the GDP of Brazil, Russia, India and China could exceed the G6 in less than 40 years.  As accelerating global economic activity increasingly impacts social and environmental conditions, there is an urgent need to support sustainable development.

 

In emerging markets environmental exposure is high, and markets are beset with the risks arising from corruption, lack of transparency and social tensions. VPG seeks to use the leverage that business and finance offer for promoting sustainable development in emerging markets, thereby harnessing the power of markets to achieve economic, social, and environmental benefits.

 

It is VPG’s conviction that the knowledge and practice required to guide sustainable investment needs to be anchored in the emerging markets themselves: rather than importing aid and regulatory tools, VP will work to build self-sustaining practices and businesses locally.

Opportunity
“The knowledge and capacity gap are more of a problem for development than the finance gap.”

Peter Woicke, former Executive Vice-President, International Finance Corporation (IFC)

 

Today, tools or services that make it easier and more effective for investors, financial services organizations or companies to comply with, contribute to, and further the objectives for sustainable development when investing in the emerging markets are few.

 

The capacities for delivering such services are currently missing due to lack of knowledge and practical experience. In order for sustainable development in emerging markets to become a reality it is of critical importance to undertake the necessary efforts to develop both the knowledge and practice base in these countries themselves.

 

By supporting local organizations and initiatives and promoting their capacities for offering the services, tools and knowledge investors interested in sustainable investment need, VPG enables the formidable lever sustainable investment represents to create positive impact. 

VantagePoint Global’s initiative contributes to a decisive global transformation leading to increased transparency in emerging markets, new capacities for local investment services providers, heightened awareness of the risks and opportunities in local markets and improved attractiveness for capital investment.


OrganiZation and People
VantagePoint Global's founding donors are Alison and David Blood, The Blood Family Foundation, US. Mr David Blood is Managing Partner of Generation Investment Management and former CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, UK.

Partners

VantagePoint Global (VPG) welcomes strategic partners and associates to support existing projects, co-initiate and implement new projects and contribute to building and strengthening its network. Our strategic partners and associates are private persons, foundations, corporations and consultants who are committed to making a significant difference and who are willing to engage in innovative approaches to enhance sustainable development in emerging markets.

 

By joining VPG you support our commitment to building capacity for sustainable investment in emerging markets and demonstrate that you share our belief that sustainable development in emerging markets can be maximized by the leverage that business and finance offer.

 

Our partners include:

Network

Our global network consists of international leaders in capital markets, business and industry, foundations, venture philanthropy, social enterprise, sustainable development and geopolitics. Strengthening and developing its network is an essential ingredient for VPG’ success.

 

If you would like to join our community, or require more information, please contact us.

 

Team


Oliver Karius
Managing Director, Co-Founder

Throughout his career, Oliver has focused on sustainable development, science, business and finance. He has strong connections to the for-profit and non-profit sustainable investment market in the US, EU, South-Africa and Japan. He is a partner at LGT Venture Philanthropy (www.lgtvp.com). He was Head of Research for Forma Futura, an independent asset management company, focusing on contributing to a sustainable quality of life (www.formafutura.com).

Before setting-up VPG, Oliver served as Manager Research Services and Senior Sustainability Analyst at SAM Research for the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI). He was responsible for investment research, product-development and client-services for SAM Research’s global client base including Corporate Sustainability Benchmarking for the world’s largest listed companies. Prior to that Oliver worked for one of Europe’s largest Asset Managers F&C (formerly known as ISIS) specializing on all aspects of Socially Responsible Investment.

 

Oliver holds a MSc from Imperial College, University of London and a Dipl. Biol degree from the Ludwig-Maximilians University, Munich, Germany. Oliver speaks fluent English, German and conversational French and Afrikaans.


Alois Flatz

Co-Founder
Alois’ career has focused exclusively on the interface of business/finance and sustainable development. He is a managing partner of zouk ventures ltd in London, an independent venture capital firm established in 1999, dedicated to clean technology. Alois is on the Board of BTS Investment Advisors, a specialised boutique focused on financial consultancy and investments in the Indian private equity sector, advising assets with a value of over USD 800 million. Alois is the co-founder of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes (DJSI). Before founding VPG he served as partner and member of the Executive Committee of SAM Group where he was responsible for SAM Research Inc., product development and SAM Indexes GmbH. 

Alois holds a Ph.D. in Business administration from St. Gallen University, Switzerland. He holds a masters degree in business administration from University of Economics of Vienna, Austria and a post-master diploma in international management from Ecole des Haute Etudes Commerciale (HEC), Paris, France. Alois is fluent in German, English and French.

Francois Escher
Co-Founder
Francois Escher is a founder of Prospectives Advisors, a strategic advisory firm focusing on the development of corporate strategy, future business scenarios, sustainability, and organizational capability. He was Director of Strategy & Marketing with Motorola Semiconductor Europe (SPS) and General Manager of Motorola Switzerland; Director for Global Strategic Capabilities and New Business Development with AT&T International Operations; Director of Strategy & Alliances, Europe with DEC. In addition, from 1999 to 2001 Francois served on the Board of SAM.

 

Francois graduated at the Institute of International Studies (IUHEI) of the University of Geneva in international relations, political sciences and economics (M.A.). He also holds diploma for Development Studies (IUD Geneva) and a degree in social sciences from the University of Neuchatel (BA). A Swiss citizen, he has a multi-lingual and multi-cultural background, and is fluent in German, French, English, and Italian.

Andrew Gaines

Associate

Andrew has over five years’ experience in management consulting in the insurance and financial services sector. He has been working with VPG since March 2006 on risk mitigation mechanisms aimed at enabling an increase in private sector investment in emerging market enterprises. Before joining VPG, Andrew worked at Accenture in the UK insurance practice, specializing in business change and project management. Prior to that he was a project manager in the insurance division of Credit Suisse, supporting senior management in the firm’s European subsidiaries. While in Switzerland, Andrew started ProBono Ventures, a freelance network of pro bono consultants supporting budding entrepreneurs with small business development.

Andrew holds an MBA in International Finance from HEC School of Management in Paris and a BA in Sociology and Organizational Communication from Pepperdine University in Malibu, California. Andrew speaks fluent English, German, French and conversational Spanish.

(www.gainespartners.com)


History
VantagePoint Global (VPG) was initiated by Alois Flatz, Oliver Karius and Francois Escher in 2004. This team has over 25 years experience in developing and implementing sustainable investment approaches and bring an extensive international network of industry experts and opinion leaders. Major accomplishments in the past include the successful development and execution of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and the independent rating as the world’s No #1 Sustainability Research in 2004.

 

They went on to look for new and innovative ways to address the social and environmental dimensions of investing towards and engaging in the emerging markets: How to go beyond today’s SRSI (Socially Responsible and Sustainable Investment) standards of developed economies and how to extend them so as to involve mainstream finance globally?

VantagePoint Global represents a step in that direction.