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"We are looking for investments in companies that benefit humanity"

Ornit Shinar, director of Citi's investment arm in Israel, explained how Citi will invest up to a trillion dollars in sustainable fields by 2030

CTech | 17:05  31.05.2021

"It is impossible to change the world in one second. Therefore, we focus on immediate doable changes: we invest in startups, we help with funding for minorities, promote female entrepreneurship, offer access to work and funds for those groups with less access to money. These are things we can do with investments in external companies in a fairly immediate manner," said Ornit Shinar, director of Citi's investment arm in Israel, in a conversation with Calcalist reporter Sophie Shulman at Calcalist's ESG Investment Conference.

Shinar explained how Citi will invest up to a trillion dollars in sustainable fields by 2030, and said that this amount will be invested not only in venture capital - but also in a variety of areas such as infrastructure, education, and improving access to funds. The money will also be invested in Citi's streamlining, which the bank believes will help advance the world to a better place.

In addition, Citi has committed to balance its carbon consumption by 2050. "It's not for nothing that we are talking about 2050. It is impossible to completely change an organization of 200,000 people in a day, it is one of the largest banks in the world. It will take time. The idea is to improve the way we work: less travel, fewer flights, people will be expected to be more efficient and cost-effective. There is no doubt that the coronavirus has done a lot of good in this area. Digitization allows our customers to access services in a much more efficient way," she said.

On investments, Shinar explained that there will be no favoritism. "First of all, we will invest in good companies, because at the end of the day, this is not philanthropy. Our fund is a financial fund that wants to invest in good companies, but is also looking for companies operating in fields that are beneficial to humanity. We are looking for good and right investments."

Shinar named "The mom project" as an example of a startup with a good cause in which Citi has invested. It is a project that targets large companies, aiming to bring women, who had stopped working to stay home with their children, back to work. "On the one hand they turn to the big companies and tell them look, there is a whole market of women who have built careers, been very successful, and then left to be with their children at home for 10-15 years and they want to return to the job market. It is complicated because they were too senior to start again all the way from the bottom. On the other hand, it is very complicated to bring them back as senior executives after being away from the job market for so long. This project gets these large companies to help those women to return to the job market," she said.

You can watch the full interview in the video above

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