Our clients include financial institutions, investors, entrepreneurs, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations.
To help clients focus on impact finance and investment, we draw on our deep experience in structured finance and fund formation, to the formation and governance of for-profit social enterprises, not-for-profit organizations and hybrid entities. We also advise companies that are looking to grow with funding from impact finance investors. We have been named the #1 most innovative law firm by Financial Times from 2016-2018 and runner-up in 2019, in part for our work on behalf of our impact finance clients.
Our work in this space is complemented by our long-standing commitment to global pro bono work. Our pro bono program ranks #6 internationally and #9 in the U.S. by The American Lawyer, out of the nation’s top 200 law firms.
We support the broad social goal of raising the quality of life for people in every part of the world. Our Impact Finance and Investment practice assists organizations working to improve conditions and outcomes across many sectors. With our clients, we help communities gain access to employment, financing, affordable housing, education, healthcare, water and sustainable ecosystems, sanitation technology, and energy.
We’ve helped clients globally make a meaningful and measurable social impact. We advised Goldman Sachs and Calvert Foundation on the nation’s first Environmental Impact Bond, issued by the D.C. Water and Sewer Authority to fund green infrastructure and help improve the District’s water quality. We assisted LeapFrog Investments Group, a profit-with-purpose investor in emerging markets, on its $180 million investment in Ghana’s largest and first publicly-listed insurer Enterprise Group. We helped Calvert Impact Capital launch Benefit Chicago, a collaboration with MacArthur Foundation and Chicago Community Trust to invest $100 million in non-profits and social enterprises working throughout the Chicago region. The capital will provide low-interest loans and other investments to accelerate the efforts of local social sector organizations working to address key priorities, such as education and child care, access to healthy food, quality affordable housing, energy conservation, job creation and training and more. And we have acted for Omidyar Network on its investments into entrepreneurs who share their commitment to advancing social good.
The team is led by a dedicated Impact Finance Attorney, coordinating Orrick’s resources to field the best lawyers based on each client’s goals. This includes lawyers from our M&A and Private Equity, Finance, Energy & Infrastructure, and Technology Companies Group practices, among others, who are able to advise on investment transactions, startup needs and compliance issues. As needed, we call on a network of local counsel in countries around the world to execute each matter.
Below are some recent examples of our work.
We’re partnering with leading organizations to promote the growth of Impact Finance globally, and have written extensively on the subject. We assisted the G8 Social Impact Investment Task Force in publishing its landmark report, Impact Investing: The Invisible Heart of Markets. We’re the first global law firm to become a member of the Global Impact Investing Network – a platform for like-minded investors – and the founding member of the GIIN Legal Practitioner’s Working Group.
A global team of our lawyers assisted London-based social entrepreneurship incubator UnLtd in analyzing the current legal and regulatory systems of the G8 countries with respect to businesses that seek to distribute profits while pursuing social impact – known as “profit-with-purpose businesses” (PPBs). Our report, Balancing Purpose and Profit, is the most comprehensive survey of the legal landscape for social enterprise in all G8 countries. For our work with UnLtd, we won TrustLaw’s 2015 Impact Award for a project that “demonstrates significant, wide-ranging impact on the pro bono client, their community, and beyond.”
We also partnered with Third Sector Capital Partners to co-author the first analysis of the legislative landscape of U.S. pay for success activities. We’ve hosted and sponsored events that bring together the impact finance community and are regularly invited to speak about impact finance around the world.