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Investing in Breakthrough: Corporate Venture Capital

Investing in Breakthrough: Corporate Venture Capital

For most people, even in business, the corporate venture capital sector is often out of sight and out of mind, but that looks set to change. As part of Volans’ Breakthrough Capitalism program, we are proud to present Investing in Breakthrough: Corporate Venture Capital, a research report that reveals how some leading corporate venture capital (CVC) funds are investing in deals that provide financial return as well as social and/or environmental impact — and how, over time, more might do so. This emerging form of impact investment, the report concludes, will have an increasing powerful influence on the future competitiveness of companies that operate such funds, and make more capital available for impact ventures.

Based on interviews with key CVC players, including Intel, Patagonia, Pearson, Suez and GE, the report identifies:

  • Some of the sectors that have a high propensity for long-term thinking and acting, including such domains as cleantech, education, health, urban infrastructure and transportation, financial inclusion, agriculture and food.
  • Novel approaches to impact innovation in terms of timing horizons, strategy and operations by corporate venture capitalists.
  • Key take-aways for corporate venture capital and impact funds to consider when building successful investment partnerships and syndicates.

“There has always been a social impact element to corporate venture capital. If you ask people why they are in the venture business, it’s because they want to work with brilliant entrepreneurs and participate in solving real world problems.” Marc Yi, Intel Capital.

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