How A Princess And A CEO Are Applying The VC Model To Philanthropy

They decided that if the current model for philanthropy wasn’t working to lift girls out of poverty, they needed to create something new, combining Roberts’s development and marketing experience—plus access to PSI’s 9,000 employees across 65 countries—with the crown princess’s international clout and track record of giving voice to those in need. They devised a strategy to enlist women (who were able to invest at least $1 million each) to run innovative pilot programs, though Roberts makes sure to point out that the organization “is not a club for rich women.” The focus on private capital was strategic: Traditional funders typically need to see results before they’ll pour money into something. “Private money is less risk-averse,” says the crown princess. This freedom would allow the collective to gamble on experimental ideas.

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