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Metrics
GIIN Launches Public IRIS User Registry

The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) collaboration with Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS)

Burgess COMMENTARY

Peter Burgess

Global Impact Investing Network
Wed, Sep 19, 2012 at 10:35 AM
Reply-To: Global Impact Investing Network
To: peterbnyc@gmail.com

GIIN Launches Public IRIS User Registry

September 19, 2012 — The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) launched today an online registry where users of the Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS) are encouraged to publicly list the IRIS metrics they use to monitor the social, environmental, and financial performance of their impact investing activities. The registry provides a directory of IRIS use that serves as a valuable resource for the growing community of organizations integrating IRIS into their performance measurement practices. Currently, 34 registered users have listed their IRIS metrics on the registry. An IRIS Registered User Badge is provided to organizations that list on the registry.

The GIIN is hosting webinars on October 11 and October 25 where participants can learn more about the IRIS Registry, including how to access and search performance metrics used in the impact investing field, and how to become a registered IRIS user.

“By providing transparency into the performance metrics used in impact investing, the IRIS registry both enables investors to learn from their peers and increases accountability to the field,” said Luther M. Ragin, Jr., Chief Executive Officer of the GIIN. “The launch of this resource is an important milestone in our work to advance standardization and consistency in impact measurement across the industry.”

In addition to the metrics listed by registered IRIS users, the IRIS website also provides access to the metrics identified by field-building groups as important for performance measurement in particular areas of the impact investing market: sustainable agriculture IRIS metrics from the Finance Alliance for Sustainable Trade, microfinance metrics from the Microfinance Information Exchange and Social Performance Task Force, and metrics for small and growing businesses in emerging markets from the Aspen Network for Development Entrepreneurs. IRIS metrics embedded into the Global Impact Investing Rating System are also available for download. Over the coming months, the IRIS initiative will be publishing additional metrics recommendations from industry associations, including a set for U.S. community banking.

Impact investors, impact investment funds, mission-driven businesses and organizations receiving impact investment capital, and technical assistance providers are among the IRIS users currently listed on the registry. Each listing includes background information about the organization, such as the specific sectors and geographies in which the organization works, as well as its impact objectives, enabling a better understanding of commonly selected metrics in various areas of the market, as well as the field overall. The initial IRIS registered users – listed at the time of the registry launch – invest across emerging and developed markets, and cover a wide variety of impact sectors and objectives. These organizations, who have taken on a leadership role in their early support for this industry tool, are:

  • Accion-Frontier Investment Group
  • Acumen Fund
  • Adobe Capital
  • Agora Partnerships
  • Agro-Ecological Investment Management
  • Bamboo Finance
  • Beartooth Capital
  • Caspian Capital Partners
  • Challenges Worldwide
  • Community Capital Management, Inc. (CCM)
  • d.light design
  • Grassroots Business Fund
  • Grassroots Capital Management Corp.
  • IDB-Opportunities for the Majority
  • IGNIA
  • Impact Investment Partners.LLP (IIP)
  • Inveneo
  • KL Felicitas Foundation
  • Lundin Foundation
  • MicroVest
  • Minerva Capital Group
  • New Ventures
  • Northern California Community Loan Fund (NCCLF)
  • Pacific Community Ventures
  • Root Capital
  • Sarona Asset Management
  • SJF Ventures
  • Small Enterprise Assistance Funds
  • SNS Impact Investing
  • The Ford Foundation - PRI Fund
  • Toniic
  • Vox Capital
  • Willow Impact Investors
  • XSML

IRIS is a set of standardized metrics that can be used to describe an organization’s social, environmental, and financial performance. The IRIS initiative is managed by the GIIN as a key part of its work to develop infrastructure for the impact investment field. In addition to managing the IRIS performance metrics, the IRIS initiative promotes IRIS adoption and facilitates voluntary contribution of IRIS-aligned performance data for aggregation and market analysis. By standardizing the metrics used to track and report social and environmental performance, IRIS provides the basis for credible and comparable performance measurement, which is critical to establishing an effective and efficient impact investing marketplace.

About the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN): IRIS is an initiative of the GIIN, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the scale and effectiveness of impact investing. Impact investments are investments made into companies, organizations, and funds with the intention to generate measurable social and environmental impact alongside a financial return. Impact investments can be made in both emerging and developed markets, and target a range of returns from below market to market rate, depending upon the circumstances. The GIIN builds critical infrastructure and supports activities, education, and research that help accelerate the development of a coherent impact investing industry. For more information, please visit www.thegiin.org.


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