JPMorgan Chase Launches AdvancingCities

AdvancingCities, a first-of-its-kind corporate effort, will create a new investment fund to finance critical projects, help more people benefit from economic growth and leverage outside capital to invest a total of $1.5 billion in cities

Sep 12, 2018

The AdvancingCities Challenge will encourage the development of creative solutions to drive inclusive growth through collaboration between civic, business and community leaders

JPMorgan Chase today announced the creation of AdvancingCities, a new $500 million, five-year initiative to drive inclusive growth and create greater economic opportunity in cities across the world. AdvancingCities applies insights from JPMorgan Chase’s proven model for impact in Detroit, Chicago and Washington, D.C., and combines the firm’s lending capital, philanthropic capital and expertise to make investments in cities.

Based on the firm’s previous experience, JPMorgan Chase expects its AdvancingCities investment to attract an additional $1 billion in outside capital, resulting in a total of $1.5 billion directed to efforts that will increase inclusive growth in cities. The firm will invest in cities where conditions exist to help those who have not benefited from economic growth. This includes demonstrated, strong collaboration across the public and private sectors on solutions that create opportunity for people at risk of being left out of economic growth. Specifically, AdvancingCities will deploy investments and encourage creative, forward-looking solutions that create more widely shared prosperity in two ways:

"Opportunity is not shared equally across neighborhoods," said Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO, JPMorgan Chase. "Businesses can and must step up to help change the status quo by creating a better future for all, no matter where they live. It is in our best interest and the right thing to do."

Investment Model for Impact

JPMorgan Chase’s investments will continue to focus on four strategic drivers of inclusive growth, around which the firm has developed several global initiatives over the last five years. These initiatives are specifically focused on equipping workers with 21st century job skills, providing the capital and expertise that women and minority entrepreneurs need to grow their businesses, investing in locally-driven solutions to revitalize distressed neighborhoods and helping families build strong financial futures.

Half of the $500 million will consist of philanthropic investments and up to $250 million will be low-cost, long-term capital deployed by the new AdvancingCities Investment Fund. This capital will be used to fund sustainable projects in critical sectors of underserved neighborhoods that frequently lack access to traditional financing, such as affordable housing, commercial real estate and small businesses.

The firm expects its investment to leverage an additional $1 billion in outside capital. This estimate is based on the firm’s experience in Detroit, where $50 million in loan funds supporting Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) have leveraged over $233 million from outside investors (4:1 ratio) and its national PRO Neighborhoods initiative, which has enabled CDFIs to leverage an additional $549 million in capital (a 11.4:1 ratio) for neighborhood revitalization projects.

The firm will also leverage the expertise of its employees through its Service Corps and use data from the JPMorgan Chase Institute to maximize the strategic impact of these investments.

Criteria for AdvancingCities Investments

To help more people benefit from economic growth in cities, the firm takes an integrated and sustainable approach to its investments. Deep engagement and meaningful collaboration among city leaders, businesses and nonprofits is required to drive change at the scale and pace needed to tackle the complex challenges facing communities. Working with local civic, community and business leaders, the firm’s investments will:

Solutions will help break down silos between local programs, strengthen underlying systems and advance holistic solutions to create more widely-shared prosperity. Based on learnings from past investments, AdvancingCities will make investments in cities that demonstrate the following:

"We have seen a lot of mayors stepping up and partnering with business and community leaders to do what’s right for their cities," said Peter Scher, Head of Corporate Responsibility, JPMorgan Chase. "We are excited to take learnings and best practices from investments in Detroit, Chicago and Washington, D.C. to more cities and test solutions that can help more people share in the rewards of a growing economy."

"Like many cities, Detroit’s growth remains dependent on cooperation to help solve our biggest challenges," said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. "JPMorgan Chase has been at the table with us for a long time and their investment has been critical to ensuring the city’s recovery benefits everyone. I’m hopeful experiences and lessons from their investment in Detroit will be valuable to mayors in other cities."

Sharing Insights and Expertise

As AdvancingCities works to drive inclusive growth solutions, practical insights and lessons will be shared with policymakers, community leaders and the private sector by:

JPMorgan Chase has also established an External Advisory Council, which will offer unique expertise and substantive input that informs AdvancingCities’ approach to driving inclusive growth in communities.

The Council consists of the following civic and business leaders, as well as community development and inclusive growth experts who will help inform the work of AdvancingCities:

"Mayors can get a lot done, but they can’t do everything," said Michael Nutter, former Philadelphia Mayor and current David N. Dinkins Professor of Professional Practice in Urban and Public Affairs at Columbia University. "You need leadership from community organizations and business leaders too in order to attract additional investment and build support for solutions. JPMorgan Chase’s AdvancingCities effort is designed to do just this by laying out clear goals, encouraging partnerships and future investments that help more people share in economic growth."

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