Hackquarters X | Social Impact Day, where the main focus was creating a positive impact on society and the environment from both investor and entrepreneur perspectives, was the second one of Hackquarters X events series that we started last month.
Social impact Day began with the welcome speech of Hackquarters CEO and Founder Kaan Akın.
"We connect the most promising startups with most innovative corporate companies both to help ambitious founders succeed and to help corporates embrace innovation."
In line with UNDP's 17 Sustainable Development Goals, Hackquarters, for the last two years in partnership with HSBC, runs the Sustainable Growth Program with 220+ startups applied and 25 in the pipeline. 11 startups selected for the program aim to spread the impact of the solutions designed to cope with UNDP's 17 goals' main challenges.
The event continued with the Fireside Chat: Impact Investing in a Post-COVID World, between Kaan Akın and Ezechi Britton, Founding Member, Principal & CTO in Residence at Impact X Capital. Ezechi described Impact X Capital as a fund for underrepresented entrepreneurs to fund and assist them in creating a significant impact on society, the environment, or corporate governance. He emphasized that 96% of investments are going to startups with white and male founders. ImpactX was founded on balancing between diverse groups and that 96%.
Ezechi defined impact as creating an enormous impact on society and the environment, but there is no single method to look for it. They are looking for each company case by a case basis. Then, the conversation came to the post covid investments and major transformations. The covid-19 outbreak affected companies' perspective on ESG, made every company become more sustainable, and changed their mindset. He gave electric vehicles as an example. "Tesla has been working on EV for many years to reduce the carbon dioxide emitted by diesel cars. The significance of EVs has started to be understood, the valuation of Tesla jumped, and Elon Musk is now one of the two richest people in the world. The other car companies have accelerated their focus and work on EV as well."
The last session: Future Opportunities and Challenges for Social Entrepreneurs, was moderated by Madison Marks, Director at Social Innovation Lab, Johns Hopkins University; Lubomila Jordanova, Co-Founder & CEO at Plan A.Earth; and Lyric Jain, CEO at Logically. The panelists started with started the challenges they experienced due to covid. The most challenging part for everyone was working from home and recruiting. Another challenge was fundraising, and both Lubomila's and Lyric's companies managed and got through the fundraising during covid. The significant part of this made every company or startup change into a sustainable company, trying to impact the world.
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