Green Chi Group started with a simple goal: to insist upon transparency and fairness in investing, and it grew to encompass an education platform, business accelerator, and a nongovernmental organization (NGO) foundation in the short span of ten months. Green Chi’s tagline, “ecosystemic investing, education & media” is based on the principles of literacy, transparency, and fairness, and is fully embraced by its founders and advisory board as a way to share their investment knowledge and to integrate innovation, sustainability, circularity, and inclusion in investment decisions.
Loyola University Chicago
Green Chi Group is comprised of two separate organizations that focus on individual parts of the overall mission. Green Chi Academy is an online education platform aimed at teaching the circular flow of money through impact and activist investing. Green Chi Academy has developed an investment app, tools, and content to help individuals understand financial interactions in their personal lives, their communities, and in society. The Green Chi Accelerator helps develop and scale sustainable and circular companies within its portfolio, aiding in unlocking a global $4.5 trillion circular market over the next ten years. The Accelerator is also helping companies transition from the linear extraction model to a circular model of business and investing. The company's portfolio spans numerous sectors such as biotech, education, healthcare, tourism, and food; basing circular models on the individual demands of each sector and company.
Quality Education, Sustainable Cities and Communities, and Responsible Consumption and Production are the three UN SDGs that this innovation tries to implement.
The inspiration behind Green Chi is hidden within its name. While it originally started with an idea to educate people about investing and the markets, as the company grew, so did the inspiration behind it. During an interview with the CEO and President of Green Chi, Henk Abbink, the meaning behind the name Green Chi was explained and the inspiration was revealed. Chi is the life force energy known as the joy of being alive or the breath of life. Within the context of the company, Green Chi is money as a physical manifestation of the universal life force or chi. In simpler words, “Green Chi stands for money as a force of energy for doing good in the world, and doing good is good for business,” as said by Abbink. Henk Abbink and the co-founders of Green Chi are striving to create an investment, education, and media platform that improves the quality of life for individuals by fostering sustainable, inclusive, circular, and cradle to cradle thinking in products, solutions, and services.
While Green Chi is still within its startup stage, it has partnered with several strong companies and individuals to begin forming a stable foundation for the company. The company has already gained traction with Green Chi Academy in educating students and individuals on basic investment principals, as well as impact and activist investing, during alpha testing. Green Chi Accelerator has also shown promise, as companies continue to join the portfolio and transition towards circular business models while growing the companies in the portfolio. Green Chi Holdings is also bringing students, investors, corporations, and governments together to help build connections and unite individual communities into a singular, worldwide community that supports innovation, sustainable development, and the circular economy. An important initiative in this context is Green Chi’s development of an inclusive and accessible platform, to be launched next year, that specifically caters to the needs of the global disability community.
Currently, less than 9% of the world’s economy is circular; however, upcoming generations have started creating unique consumption trends that support creating sustainability and equality for all, including business practices. The Sustainable Development Goals have become a part of consumption trends for recent generations as a growing social consciousness and global awareness influences purchasing patterns. The circular economy focuses on society-wide benefits by redefining growth, not based on the linear economy approach, but in decoupling economic activity from the extraction and consumption of finite sources, thus avoiding waste. There has been a massive growth in the circular economy in recent years around the globe, from governments setting aside money and grants to foster sustainable development, to organizations such as Circle Economy, the Circular Club, and Circular Hotspots, and foundations, such as the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, that contribute to growing and educating the public on the benefits of the circular economy. Green Chi is able to capitalize on this economic movement through the Academy’s educational approach and the Accelerator, in helping to transition and grow companies within a circular economic model. Green Chi considers financial literacy a core life skill in the modern global economy and is going a step further in developing proprietary tools and an app with a gamified approach that will appeal to and educate members on personal financial matters. This program will be offered to schools and individuals, starting in fifth grade, as the company aims to equip future generations with a strong knowledge of finance, the circular economy, and sustainable development.
The benefits of sustainable development and the circular economy are varied depending on the sector of business to which it is applied. As Green Chi interacts with several different business sectors, the social and environmental benefits are equally vast. The most prominent social benefit is increased access to educational tools. Financial investments can be complex and difficult to learn, but Green Chi is simplifying the market tools and creating an accessible app that will provide equal access to finance education for thousands of people. In terms of environmental impact, educating and transitioning companies to a circular economic model reduces the linear extract-and-throw-away economic model that is prevalent today. The circular economic model focuses on improving the overall wellbeing of all the individuals impacted within the lifecycle of a product, including designing products that last longer and utilizing renewable and accessible resources. Abbink mentioned that the “circular economy is a sustainable economic model” because it allows businesses and society to focus on human, social, economic, and environmental areas of sustainability all within the same model.
Henk Abbink, CEO & Founder
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Business Website: https://greenchi.com/
Year Founded: 2020
Number of Employees: 2 to 10
Green Chi Group is a company that is committed to providing accessible financial education for thousands of people. Embracing the principles of literacy, transparency, and fairness, Green Chi is sharing its investment knowledge to spread innovation, sustainability, circularity, and inclusion.