Annual Impact Report
How We Ensure Positive Impact
of Distributed Profits Must Get Redistributed to the Community,
Never to Private Shareholders.
In our role as Beneficial State Bank’s nonprofit economic shareholder, we at Beneficial State Foundation seek to transform the banking industry from an extractive, predatory model into one that serves the public interest and does no harm. Our work is organized into two major areas of engagement: as a banking systems change agent and as a bank owner, investor, and practitioner.
Why did we intentionally lower our impact score?
Our colleagues are deeply committed to making real impact. They’re never afraid to question the status quo by reevaluating what we consider “mission.” Alongside partners like the Global Alliance for Banking on Values, we are continually exploring how our metrics can be made stricter to ensure the highest level of integrity and transparency. In 2016, our mission loan count dropped below our 75% mission target.
Because we several of our metrics definitions.
So while the reduction may appear negative, it tells an uplifting story about how deeply committed we are to making real impact. A key measurement change we made was to shift our use of the conventional LMI indicator, which refers to Low and Moderate Income communities. LMI lending is defined by number or dollar amount of loans to LMI-designated neighborhoods, per federal data. While this definition may seem like a valuable indicator, it is not always accurate. In fact, it can be counterproductive because not every business in an LMI-designated area helps or hires from that same community. We stopped using the federal definition and determined that in order to count a loan in a mission category, the borrower must be engaged in a truly mission-driven activity; it’s not enough for the borrower to only be located in an LMI community. Since raising our standards three years ago, we have increased our mission lending by 17 percentage points, up to 81%!