Letter from the CEO
A Call to Action
01.04.2018

American capitalism as a tool for inclusivity, participation, and positive effect.

We are living in a time of paradox. As a country we are perhaps the richest in our history while arguably the most divided since the Civil War. Economic statistics point to a growing economy yet prosperity is not widely shared. Inflation-adjusted wages for a meaningful segment of our population have been on a steady decline since the 1970s, making scapegoats of globalization, technology, and immigration. Political opportunists of both major parties oversimplify complex issues for personal gain, while further dividing and polarizing their constituents. Natural disasters bring out unimaginable selflessness while civility in national discourse ebbs to appalling lows. The long view is too quickly discarded in favor of short-term superficialities and self-serving theatrics. A troubling and confusing picture albeit one I will argue offers a singular opportunity to redefine American capitalism as a problem-solving tool for positive effect, engagement, inclusivity, and participation. It’s time investors recognize the power of their personal capital.

At Collaboration our introduction to problem-solving capitalism came via early investments in for-profit micro finance. Later commitments to seed and help launch companies and funds that prioritize democratic access to capital and opportunity cemented our quest to reconnect investors with investments that reflect their personal values and priorities. This spawned a dedicated advisory practice whose mission is to deliver separately managed portfolios across public equity, public debt, private equity, and private debt. The constituents of these portfolios are investments in companies whose corporate practices and objectives we believe in, and/or for-profit enterprises that specifically address often intensely local problems typically the mandate of public sector and philanthropic funding. Collaboration portfolios prioritize balance sheet integrity, transparency, and liquidity. Our goal is to deliver market or better returns, benchmarked to traditional indices.

A founding tenet of our investment advisory practice is the importance of democratic access to capital and opportunity. Why? We believe that the proudest accomplishments of our great nation are rooted in a level playing field. Period. Collaboration clients have played a meaningful role in the launch of companies and funds whose missions are tied to access and social and financial equity. We are also proud members and supporters of not for profit organizations that are actively redefining the civic forum across North America via either tangibly transformative public spaces or consumer awareness and education. We are committed to civic leadership and engagement in every aspect of our work.

I invite you to join a growing number of forward-looking individuals and families whose portfolio commitments purposely tie together who they are as investors, citizens, consumers, and contributors.

Christopher L. Knapp

Chief Executive Officer