$3 Billion is the New $1 Billion
Tuesday, April 25, 2023
April 2023
$3 Billion is the New $1 Billion

By Melissa Banigan

In 2021, we announced that Ethic crossed $1 billion assets under management (AUM). In 2022, we outdid ourselves by crossing the $2 billion threshold. Today, we’re proud to announce that we’ve hit another milestone by exceeding $3 billion AUM. 

We believe that $3 billion is the new $1 billion. In just a few short years, Ethic has matured from being an early-stage sustainability startup to a growth-stage company. Yet we maintain the same idealistic spirit and commitment to our mission that we had on day one: to help guide the transition to a future where all investing is sustainable investing.

As we celebrate the important milestone of crossing $3 billion AUM, let’s take a moment to look back at where we began, provide a roadmap for where we’re going, and celebrate Ethic’s team and community who will help us get there. 

Where We Began and Where We’re Going 

We’ve come a long way since developing our tech-driven asset management platform, an interactive portal for seeking impact that we launched in 2016. In 2022, we raised $50 million in Series C funding despite a historic decline in venture capital funding. To date, we’re backed by venture investors, including Oak HC/FT, Nyca, Fidelity, UBS, and Sound Ventures. 

We’re proud to have our venture investors as partners and believe we share similar visions of the future. Over the last few years, we’ve developed innovative products to help power personalization and support the sustainable investment journey for wealth advisors. For example, our Values Mapping Exercise (VME) is an easy-to-use tool that helps advisors and their clients define their values more clearly across Ethic’s 19 Sustainability Pillars, a holistic system reflecting complex issues, such as women’s rights, LGBTQ+ justice, racial justice, climate change, animal rights, and education. Using data from the VME and Ethic’s platform, investors are empowered to build a customized equity portfolio for each client that is aligned with their unique values. 

A look at the Values Mapping Exercise (VME). This image is for illustrative purposes only.

New Products and Features

Our platform, products, and team are making a profound impact. At the time of writing, our sustainable investment approach has helped the clients of wealth advisors reduce their carbon ownership by more than 190,000 MT — equivalent to the emissions created by driving 487 million miles, or about 19,500 times around the Earth’s circumference. 

Divestment is only one strategy for making a positive impact — engagement is another. In March of this year, we rolled out a new feature for our clients, Ethic’s Proxy Voting reporting. Proxy voting is a way shareholders can voice their preferences on matters related to the issues they most care about. It provides a formal communication channel between corporate management and shareholders. Unlike divesting, holding onto shares gives investors a seat at the table. 

Ethic’s reporting of proxy voting contains account-specific voting information that includes summary metrics for historical proxy voting activity, featured shareholder proposals related to sustainability, and a history of meetings voted, including ballot-level details. 

Learn more about how Ethic helps advisors with proxy voting.

Growing Our Team

Reaching the significant milestone of crossing $3 billion AUM reflects the strong investment performance by our team, which comprises interdisciplinary experts in finance, technology and engineering, sustainability, and storytelling. Since January 2021, we’ve added 47 new team members, growing from 27 to 74 people — a 170 percent increase. 

Despite the current shaky economic landscape, we’ve made a few recent strategic additions to our team, including David Sternlicht, who joined us in September 2022 as head of Nature Investing. Previously VP and head of PE/VC at Jordan Park Group, David has assembled a team of industry leaders in finance, science, technology, and storytelling to develop nature as an asset class for Ethic.

We celebrate the entire Ethic team that helped us meet the important milestone of crossing $3 billion AUM, and we look forward to working together to balance growth and impact for our clients.

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Sources and footnotes

Melissa Banigan is a content strategist with over 15 years of communications experience working with global companies and nonprofits. Also a journalist and author, her work appears in The Washington Post, CNN, the BBC, NPR, and the Independent, among other publications, and she's written three books for youth.

Alex Laipple is originally from Pittsburgh, PA, now living in New Jersey with wife Meghan and his  four daughters Charlotte, Ruthie, Quinn, and Ellie. Alex has over 15 years’ experience in Business Development and Growth roles within start-ups and asset management firms.

Rebecca Hu is director of Sustainability Product at Ethic. Rebecca has spent the last 7 years building technology products to help navigate the complex world of sustainability. Previously Rebecca studied engineering and studio art at Dartmouth College.