Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to attend the Milken Institute Global Conference 2013. For me, this was a once-in-a-lifetime (so far) experience that ranks high on my list. I wrote a piece for Forbes on some of the great panels on impact investing that I attended.
While Al Gore was there, I did not get a chance to visit with him.
By special arrangement, I was able to get an hour one-on-one with four-star General Wesley Clark, the former NATO commander of allied forces in Europe who ran for President in 2004.
In an upcoming article in Forbes, I’ll be writing more about my interview with him, but let me just say that he is an extraordinary person. He is as articulate off the cuff as anyone I’ve ever met and clearly as smart as they come.
General Clark serves on the advisory board to Vital Capital, which is led by Eytan Stibbe of Tel Aviv. Vital Capital has partnered with Impact Capital Strategies in the U.S. Eric Weinberg and David van Adelsberg joined Mr. Stibbe at the conference. They arranged for me to meet with the General.
General Clark was immediately impressed by Mr. Stibbe when they met in Milan years ago and immediately traveled with him to see his projects in Africa. Vital Capital is a large, private equity firm that does impact investing–investments made with a social impact objective–there in Africa. Vital has provided the equity for several billion dollars of affordable housing in Sub-Saharan Africa.How’s that for impact!
I’m eager to tell you the whole story, but you’ll have to wait. Next month I’ll be going to Africa to see the projects myself. When I return, I’ll write up my report in Forbes and perhaps do a longer report in a Kindle Single. I’ll also share thoughts and insights here–don’t worry.