Fowler Center Hosts 2nd Annual Impact Investing Competition | Weatherhead School at Case Western Reserve University

Fowler Center Hosts 2nd Annual Impact Investing Competition

Posted 3.5.2021

On Friday February 26th, the Fowler Center for Business as an Agent of World Benefit hosted their 2nd Impact Investing Competition in virtual format sponsored by McDonald Hopkins, LLC. 

Five student teams presented before a panel of five judges - all representing a unique and diverse field of investing and social impact-oriented practitioners. The pre-recorded 8 minutes long video presentations from the participating teams addressed the reason behind choosing a specific UN Global Goal, their investment thesis, their approach for determining investments and overview of each investment. The five judges included:

o   Lynn Carpenter, Co-Founder, EPOCH Pi;

o   Theo Legwaila, Analyst, EPOCH Pi;

o   Christal L. Contini, Co-Chair, Mergers & Acquisitions Practice Group, McDonald Hopkins, LLC;

o   Amy Wojnarwsky, Business Associate, Business Department, McDonald Hopkins, LLC;

o   Chris Jeannot, Relationship Management Officer, Portfolio Management, The Glenmede Trust Company, N.A.;

This year’s Impact Investing Competition was focussed on enhancing the students’ awareness of the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development and gaining real- world understanding of portfolio management in the impact investing space. Students were given an opportunity to be creative in their role as an impact investor and create a portfolio of investment that had maximum impact coupled with good financial returns. Teams were responsible for allocating $100 Million USD in one to three investment opportunities.  After finalizing their portfolio and completing due diligence, teams were required to “pitch” their investment portfolio to a panel of potential investors (judges of the competition) through a pre-recorded video presentation. 

Due to COVID-19, this year’s competition was held in a virtual format and live-streamed to the Fowler Center’s YouTube Channel. The Competition began at 9 am and each team was given a specific time slot during which the pre-recorded video presentation was played. After the video concluded, judges had a 5 minutes long live Q&A session with each team to understand their investment choices and strategies. Judges evaluated each team and also provided their valuable feedback, which was shared anonymously with participating teams after the competition was concluded. At 11:00 am, a pre-recorded interview with Keynote Speaker- Aarti Chandna (Impact/Angel Investor & Advisor, Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund and also a member of Board of Trustees at Case Western Reserve University) was played.  At 11:30 am, the winners were announced.

The competition and the keynote speaker interview are both available to watch on the Fowler Center’s YouTube Channel

The first place, and a prize of $2,000 total, went to team “PMBA”: Eric Novak (Part Time MBA), Anchit Agarwal (Part-time MBA) and Brendan Durkin (Part-time MBA).

The second place, and a prize of $1,000 total, went to team “Oriental Charging Bull” comprised of members: Yue Lu (MSM- Finance), Tianchen Qin (MSM- Finance), Haoxin Liu (MSM- Finance) and Lingkai Wu (MSM- Finance).

The Fowler Center for Business as an Agent of World Benefit would like to thank all of the student teams for their hard work over the course of the competition, the judges for their time and dedication to the education and coaching of our business students, and our sponsors from McDonald Hopkins for their support for the competition and prizes. We would also like to thank Aarti Chandna - our Keynote Speaker for the event, for helping us build the format and guiding us throughout the competition.

Fowler Center would like to thank Megan Buchter, Director of the Fowler Center, for managing the technical platform and making this competition a success in virtual format. A big shout out and thanks to Fowler Center Fellows, Rachel Horvath, Ayushee Agarwal and Jim Kavalec, Fowler Center social media manager, Emily Nemecek, and staff, Joseph Bianchini for working together tirelessly on planning, organizing and managing this competition virtually.


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