Understanding the Impact of Impact Investing

the impact of impact investing

Understanding the Impact of Impact Investing has been an area for debate and discussion for quite some time. So what are the options in measuring this impact? At the Caban Group has long been interested in ascertaining the impact of its work, not only to gauge where we are being effective with impact investing in South Africa, but to understand how effective we are being at promoting our broad pro-venture and pro-impact agenda.

At The Caban Group Impact Investments our aim is to source high impact solutions to some of Africa’s biggest challenges and through investment and support take those solutions to scale. To achieve this, the first step is to understand the impact each venture has on our target outcomes.

Sectors where impact investing is typically deployed

the impact of impact investing

Measurement is certainly not unique within the impact sector. In fact, is that we live in a world of increasingly sophisticated streams and sources of data, organsiations of all shapes and sizes are looking at data to understand if their strategies are being executed to the intended level. The reason you for instance increasingly see the inclusion of hashtags on television and printed advertising campaigns is in part to measure the effectiveness of those campaigns by the number of people who use the hashtags on targeted social media platforms. It makes complete sense, as we want to see if it works and explore opportunities for improvement.

Measuring the impact of Impact Investing

The circular model of measuring impact investing used at the university of Stanford’s School of Social Innovation

the impact of impact investing

Let’s consider a more relevant example inline with our own investment activities, if a school is looking to buy in new technology or education activities, it will certainly want to know if the tool or technology has proved to work in a similar environment. If the provider of this product can go a step further and actually demonstrate and verify the improved learning experience, then it is our belief that, with all other things being equal, the school will be more inclined to purchase a product with evidence of impact.

Impact measurement framework from Harvard Business School

22 file Understanding the Impact of Impact Investing

Of course, there might be many similar examples in the modern-day economy. Let’s face it, we all want proof that something is working before we make a financial commitment. Would you honestly buy something from Amazon if the ratings it receives is only at a one- or two-star level? Even if the financial commitment is lower, you will be hesitant to purchase from such a low rated product. It’s quite clear that the most valuable proof of concept or measurement within the organisation is the demonstration the effectiveness if its offering.

At The Caban Group we are committed to understanding the impact of impact investing and the performance of each venture we work with, both in terms of the numbers of people benefiting from a product or service and the effect of the product on people. We are clearly not alone in our commitment in ensuring that the interventions of our financing needs to cary proof it its impact. The impact investment community has been striving for some time to increase the practice and effectiveness of measuring and reporting of social impact. Let’s face it, the sustainability of our industry depends on our ability to prove impact. Governments are also increasing its focus on understanding the role of impact and how, perhaps a more standardised model can be used to ensure a fair measure of impact across the board.

The Impact Investment Enhancement framework from Global Executive Business School

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As an organisation we take the view that we need to be able to evaluate all elements of operations in order to succeed. Our focus on measurement needs to be clear and transparent in our own organisation in order to effectively apply it to the companies we invest in. Having a clear impact policy certainly assist is simplifying the process of both measurement and communicating the importance and process of measurement within investee firms.

Our experiences of defining and measuring impact within investments have very much bedded down the importance of aligning commercial and social impact. With a number of opportunities showing strong potential in the pipeline we have been investigating since 2018, those who show the most promise, interestingly enough, show a very strong alignment of their commercial and social impact goals.

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Matthew Musgrove

Matthew Musgrove

Matthew is an entrepreneur and business Advisor with a passion for change management and social empowerment. With a background in business accounting and advisory, as well clinical research project management, he strives to find strategic and sustainable solutions to business problems.



Mark Van Hoff comes from background of technical & production planning, budgeting & scheduling of major live events. As the first production co-ordinator at M-NET for Outside Broadcasts, Mark has managed major local and international productions including Miss South Africa, Miss World, multiple music events and major sports events, including the PnP Cycling Tour.​Mark co-founded Van-Man Productions in 1994, Page to Picture in 2000 and Move Media Networks in 2007. All three companies have achieved domestic success and have been well-regarded in the South African production industry.



Oluwaseun Adewuyi who is the Group Chief Finance Officer (CFO) at Caban, is a Certified Chartered Accountant, with Fellowship status at both the ACCA as well as the Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, a UK Based industry body with a specific focus on the management of charities, not-for-profit organisations and NGOs.. Oluwaseun comes with strong business acumen and 20+ years of progressive experience in finance and operations management within well-reputed and high growth organisations Including Next Plc and Royal Mail. He has been heavily involved in impact investment across Sub-Saharan Africa and has been instrumental in the creation of a series of community schools in West Africa. Throughout his career, he oversaw a broad range of operations, including Business Strategy and Business Reorganisation, summarising the organisation’s financial status, and coordinating the preparation of tactical plans, financial forecasts, and budgets. Adept at developing and implementing effective internal control framework to maintain sound financial accountability.

tim scholtz


Tim Scholtz, who's is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) at Caban Investments, is experienced in implementing corporate governance guidelines, formulating risk management structures, process and cost optimization. Tim has a strong corporate background, having worked as COO at the South African Tourism board, was COO at the Nelson Mandela foundation and as a internal audit manager at Arthur Anderson earlier in his career.

Ben Botes


Ben Botes is Entrepreneur, VC, co-Founder, Author and Academic with a strong social conscience. Ben Involved with early stage and growth firms for the past 20 years and has been Co-founder of 9 separate businesses across Africa. Ben has directly and indirectly been involved in impact investment and the support of charities and non profits for the last 30 years. Ben is a regular speaker at the African Investment Conference in London and has been featured in Wall Street for Europe, The Guardian Small Business, BBC, the Mail and Guardian in the UK and BizCommunity, Channel 3 TV, Investors Weekly, The Cape Times, Radio 702 with John Robbie and Good Hope FM in South Africa

Dave Romero


Dave Romero is a venture capitalist and entrepreneur with a passion for making an impact. A qualified Professional Accountant, Dave has been a director in multiple financial institutions and was once the youngest Chairman on the JSE, in addition to being listed as one of Business Times’ Top 100 companies and the 40th fastest-growing company in South Africa. Dave is a core founder of the Caban Group, which aims to provide a comprehensive service offering to small businesses in return for equity. With a passion for nurturing entrepreneurs, Dave can often be found outside of the boardroom – offering advice, creating innovative funding solutions and building communities through sustainable practices.



Dr Ruben Richards is a truly inspirational South African leader. Through his peace-building seminars for criminal gangs, Dr Ruben has facilitated the longest ceasefire in the history of gang warfare on the Cape Flats. In addition to being Chairman & Founder of the non-profit Ruben Richards Foundation, Dr Ruben is an ordained cleric, company director, non-executive Chairman of Visual International Limited and was once the Deputy Director-General of the now-disbanded Scorpions.