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Let's Get in the Ring or the question about our understanding of impact investment
Tomorrow we are going to be in the final of
Get in the Ring - Impact! During the battles to reach the grand final next year in The Hague, the question keeps coming up how Impact Investment and a non-profit organization like ours can fit. In this blog post we write about our
thoughts and attitudes towards Impact Investment for water without microplastics and micropollutants.
The gGmbH - our legal form for water without microplastics and micropollutants
In addition to our research
projects, our legal form and, with it, our
business model are also geared to creating the best possible impact for water without microplastics and micropollutants
As a non-profit company (gGmbH)
we are fundamentally different from startups with GmbH status. And different from other non-profit organizations such as foundations. This poses challenges to our thinking and acting every day. Especially because the perception of a gGmbH and the knowledge about this form of enterprise vary highly on the side of our stakeholders.
Even more reason for us to appreciate the openness of the makers of Get in the Ring – Impact
. Of the 18 selected German Impact
companies, all others were GmbHs.
3 aspects for interested Impact investors
are the linchpin of a gGmbH. Based on its statutes, a gGmbH is certified by the fiscal authorities as a non-profit organization, provided that the statutory orientation is pursued transparently
at all times. Furthermore, the statutes specify the
entrepreneurial scope of action - in our case research and education
- very precisely. It is also
possible to invest in a gGmbH
, although there are some special features to be considered.
Investing in Wasser 3.0 as a gGmbH is possible and means
- to go without a maximum net yield and set economically on asset classes possible in the context of a gGmbH.
- ESG criteria are not presented by marketing, but as lived values that are anchored in the company's self-image both internally and externally.
- to enable
real impact, which is not addressed in a silo, but rather in society.
clean and safe water is a human right - not an economic good
Fundamental questions about
existing social and economic contexts arose when we developed our business model for water without microplastics and micropollutants.
Water pollution with and water purification from microplastics and micropollutants are challenges for society.
Water is – for us – first and foremost a human right. But it is also an economic good and is therefore subject to corresponding economic logics. Our business model has to stand up to this field of tension.
Goals of Wasser 3.0 gGmbH = more impact for clean water
To achieve our goals, our business model and our legal form
place ecological and social impact on communities and environment above the economic profit of individuals
In order to be successful, i.e. in our case to provide as much water as possible without microplastics and micropollutants, it is also necessary to consider that solutions are currently in their infancy: Be it technologies, scientific research or politics.
In order to
achieve real impact for water without microplastics and micropollutant
s, we therefore need, in addition to further scientific knowledge and functioning technological solutions, meaningful political decisions and responsibly acting producers and consumers.
Hence, in our work
we focus not only on research and innovation but also on education, awareness raising and dialogue. We see the networking of these areas as the best way to achieve maximum impact for water without microplastics