Study looks at growing impact priorities of ‘elite entrepreneurs’

Kristin Nelson
Posted by Kristin Nelson
Wealth Management Strategy

The fourth annual Global Entrepreneur Report from BNP Paribas Wealth Management suggests that social impact has become a more meaningful business metric for successful entrepreneurs.

Cover of Entrepreneur Report of sunny room with happy people clapping.This year 39% of respondents said they judge their success by whether they’ve made a meaningful difference in terms of social, economic, and environmental contributions. The result is a significant change from two years ago, in which only 10% felt social impact was a relevant business metric.

The desire for impact extends beyond their businesses to investing. The survey found entrepreneurs are investing to promote good causes, the top three being safeguarding the environment (38%), creating jobs (38%), and clean energy (36%).

In addition, 55% of entrepreneurs have committed a portion of their wealth to achieving socially responsible outcomes. Collectively, they have committed $2.7 billion to responsible investment vehicles, according to the report.

Over 2,700 entrepreneurs, with an average net worth of $13.4 million, in 23 countries participated in the research. The survey group was 60% male and 40% female, with 40% of respondents under the age of 36.

I was interested to see the regional differences detailed in the report. Among U.S. respondents, for example, job creation ranks at the top of the impact agenda. Clean energy was the top cause for the European entrepreneurs, while safeguarding the environment was the biggest impact priority for Chinese participants.

The report also explored many aspects of their investment portfolios, including the preferred investment vehicles for achieving positive impact. The top five are:

  • Equity funding (21%)
  • Environmental investing (21%)
  • Social business investing (19%)
  • Socially responsible investing (19%)
  • Social enterprise investing (17%)

There are so many other insights in the report – I haven’t even touched on the differences that emerge between elite entrepreneurs who are millennials versus those in the baby boomer generation. I’m also inspired by the stories of several entrepreneurs who are profiled in depth as part of the report.

I encourage you to read the full report.

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