Bridges Ventures appoints Head of Impact

London, 25 January, 2012: Bridges Ventures (‘Bridges’) today announced that Clara Barby has joined the firm as Head of Impact, in a newly-created role working closely with the investment teams of each of Bridges’ funds.

Clara will lead the impact strategy throughout the firm’s three-stage “SET” process for making and measuring social and environmental impact.  This involves:

  • Selecting investments that can make a strong positive impact in Bridges’ four key impact themes: under-served areas, education& skills, health & wellbeing and the environment
  • Engaging with portfolio companies to create additional value through environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) factors
  • Tracking and reporting impact results to Bridges’ investors and other stakeholders

In addition to growing impact through Bridges’ own funds, Clara will work on the firm’s objective to promote the growth of the wider sustainable and impact investment sector.

Clara joins Bridges from INSEAD, where she recently received an MBA. At INSEAD, she also served as President of INDEVOR, the school’s Business in Society initiative. Prior to this she was Head of Corporate Strategy at AyurVAID Hospitals in India, where she worked closely with the CEO to manage the performance of seven hospitals and led the design and launch of an integrative primary health centre for chronic disease management. Clara joined AyurVAID from Acumen Fund, the global venture capital fund which invests in companies serving low-income consumers, where she worked on the Capital Markets team in New York and later co-led the India Energy portfolio, making and managing investments in clean technology companies. She earned her BA (Hons) in Classics from Oxford University in 2004.

Michele Giddens, Partner and Co-Founder at Bridges Ventures, said:

“Bridges ended 2011 with the successful first close of our third venture fund, achieving a sum almost equal to the final close of our previous fund, despite a challenging fund-raising environment.  We believe this demonstrates the commitment of investors to securing competitive financial returns alongside creating positive social and environmental impact. Clara’s appointment reaffirms Bridges’ commitment to ensuring the social and environmental achievements of our investments are measured, monitored, quantified and tracked with the same rigour and oversight as our financial returns.  She is an excellent addition to our growing team.”

Clara Barby, Head of Impact at Bridges Ventures, said:

“As investors become increasingly aware of the benefits of impact investing from both a financial and ideological standpoint, there is both a need and opportunity to show how impact can be built into the entire investment cycle – from selecting companies that will create impact as they scale, to working with them to optimise those impacts in ways that will also improve their commercial performance.  Bridges already has an excellent track record in innovation in this area and I’m excited to be joining such an experienced team.”


Bridges Ventures   

Claire Aslett Capital MSL

020 7307 5307

Notes to Editors

About Bridges Ventures

Bridges Ventures LLP (“Bridges Ventures”) is a sustainable growth investor established in 2002 with a mission to use its commercial expertise to achieve focused social or environmental benefit, as well as attractive returns for investors. Bridges Ventures has raised six funds to date which total almost £260m: Sustainable Growth Funds I, II and III, the Bridges Sustainable Property Fund, CarePlaces Partnership and the Bridges Social Entrepreneurs Fund.

The Bridges Sustainable Growth Funds invest in growth businesses across the four impact themes of Underserved Areas, Education & Skills, Environment and Health & Well-being. The Funds typically invest up to £10m at a time in ambitious, entrepreneurial businesses including early stage, growth capital and buyouts / buy ins.

Since 2002, these Funds have made equity investments totaling over £75m in 34 businesses.