June 6, 2006

Ecological Community Loan Pool

Jeff McIntire-Strasburg has written a story about an innovative investment group "for the rest of us" called Ecostructure Financial. As Jeff describes it...


Ecostructure Financial has created a funding solution for the small-scale eco-preneur with a winning idea: their new Ecological Community Loan Pool. Ecostructure, started by seasoned green businessperson Mark Winstein, has launched its own VC fund, but also wanted to create more opportunities for investors and entrepreneurs operating on smaller budgets. Their solution is a marriage of the community development financial institution model with peer-to-peer lending portal Prosper.com.

"There's a whole wave of companies whose very purpose is to solve an environmental problem, and almost none of those companies have publicly-traded stock," he continued. "If we want to solve these environmental problems, we need to open up a lot more investment to a larger section of people... There are at least 4000 eco-preneurs out there, and for many of them a $25,000 loan would make a really big difference," said Mr. Winstein.


If we are to see new alternative energy technologies take root, there will need to be a variety of funding and investment vehicles to get them started. To read the entire article, visit Jeff's sustainablog.

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Jeff McIntire-Strasburg said...

Thanks for the nod, Scott! I think this is a really promising idea...

C. Scott Miller said...

I agree. There are tremendous investment opportunities becoming available now. Thanks to high gas prices, ROI spreadsheets have never looked so good.

I am hoping the energy paradigm shift will translate into a decentralization of energy production and control. If that happens then even local, underdeveloped economies can self-sustain a percentage of their energy needs.

The world can ill afford any one resource becoming too critical - as oil has been since before WWII. The political consequences are too hideous to contemplate.

The availability of funds and investment opportunities outside the normal mechanisms of the stock exchange will help grease some deployment wheels.