Yay! What a great CEE Impact Day

Ventures from the Investment Ready (IRP) and Impact Hub Scaling Program from around Europe pitch at the leading conference for Impact Investment in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE).

On Friday, June 19th Impact Hub Vienna hosted the 4th CEE Impact Day in cooperation with Österreichische Kontrollbank (OEKB) and ERSTE Bank. Social Entrepreneurs. Experts, Impact Investors and Intermediaries came together to discuss opportunities and challenges in the field of Impact Investment in the CEE region. Charly Kleissner, serial entrepreneur and pioneering impact investor (Toniic, KL Felicitas Foundation, IRP) explained what „Impact Investing“ actually means:

Impact Investing…

is an investment approach that

intentionally seeks to create

both financial return and positive social and/or

environmental impact

that is actively measured 

Besides key-note speeches, networking opportunities and break out sessions, six ventures from the Investment Ready and Impact Hub Scaling Program got the chance to pitch at the event. From feminine hygiene products (Erdbeerwoche),  affordable technology for deaf blind people (Real DB Communicator) to Crafts in Romania (Mesteshukar ButiQ) the start-ups from the two programs showed the diversity and potential of social enterprises. Tobias Judmaier, another “Scaler” who started IssMich! as an upcycling company that makes convenience food out of unused organic fruit and vegetables said after the event:

“CEE Impact Day was a great opportunity to get to know the investors landscape but also to exchange with peers and gain practical insights over the European and global perspective of social innovation investments.”

Currently, Impact Investment only makes up a small percentage of the Austrian and worldwide investments. The CEE Impact Day however makes a compelling argument that purpose and profit are not exclusive and more and more investors are stepping up to build the sector further.

Matthias Reisinger IMPACT IS… Doing what makes you come alive in a way it contributes to more than just yourself. WHAT DID YOU DO BEFORE BECOMING PART OF THE IMPACT HUB VIENNA TEAM I was finishing my studies and building up emersense, the NGO which gave birth to the Hub WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB? Prototyping the new way of doing business WHAT DO YOU WANT TO HAVE ACHIEVED AS PART OF THE IHV TEAM BY THE END OF THE YEAR? Hosting the impact eco-system in Austria and bringing it to the next level WHAT DOES YOUR PERFECT SUNDAY LOOK LIKE? Excercize + Chillaxation + Good Food & Good Movie in Good Company WHAT IS AN ABSOLUTELY RANDOM FACT ABOUT YOU THAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW? When I was learning the piano as a child, I refused to learn the music pieces I was supposed to, but only wanted to play my own compositions PLACE OF BIRTH? Linz, Austria LANGUAGES YOU SPEAK? German, English, French