BUSINESS + ECONOMY

Investing to make an impact in society, expert weighs in

Feb 24, 2023, 9:30 PM

savings system right on the money...

A study by Bankrate has found the average American needs to make $233,000 a year to feel financially comfortable. Photo: Getty Images

SALT LAKE CITY — Typically, when it comes to investing in the economy, two things usually happen. People are unsure of what they are doing, or they get distracted by the politics of it.

Jim Sorenson, co-founder of Sorenson Capital and the Sorenson Impact Center, joined Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson on Friday to help people understand how they can make an impact in society while investing in the economy.

Matheson asked, “…. how do we actually look at investing in a proper way and how do we look at making an impact in our community and around the world?”

Sorenson explains that his business is one of the only foundations that is 100% mission aligned.

“And by that, I mean that our investments in the corpus are invested consistent with the purposes or the mission of the foundation,” Sorenson said. “So, we’re investing in investments that generate a market rate return, but they address social issues and benefit society.”

Sorenson says his foundation also focuses on overlooked and underfunded sectors of social impact. He uses disability as an example.

“There are a billion and a half that have some form of disability in the world,” he said. “And there’s really some compelling investments that have disabilities to become more employed and be able to live better lives.”

Matheson asked, “What are some of the other areas that you’re looking at that may fall into that category of overlooked and underfunded and yet still a great opportunity?”

Investing in real estate

Sorenson points to “impact real estate” as another option.

“Right now, affordability in housing is really an issue all around the country,” Sorenson said. “Particularly here in Utah.”

He says his foundation has a fund that focuses on making investments but also addresses affordable housing, economic development and access to services. 

He uses the granary district in Salt Lake City as an example. Sorenson says that it’s often an overlooked area, despite it being at the “front door of the city.”

He says his foundation was able to bring that area back to life with a better environment and housing. 

Matheson asked, “What’s the one thing you wish people better understood about impact investing?”

“I think that’s it important that people understand that impact investing is really a spectrum unlike traditional investing that’s focused on market rate,” Sorenson said. 

 

Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson can be heard on weekdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

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Investing to make an impact in society, expert weighs in