Nordic-born Summa Equity is taking impact investments to North America

One of Europe’s most prominent impact funds, Summa Equity, is expanding across the Atlantic, opening a new office in Palo Alto this summer. This will be the Nordic firm’s first office outside of Europe and comes off the back of the unveiling of its €2.35 billion impact fund. 

Since 2016, Summa has been investing in companies that are solving global challenges and creating positive Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) outcomes for society. Born in Stockholm and with a strong presence in Oslo, the firm opened a Munich office earlier this year and now is heading to the Golden State. 

Summa partners Tommi Unkuri, Gustavo Salem and Nick Roelofs will lead U.S. operations, and they will be joined by a number of Summa staff, including investment director Anna Ryrberg. 

Summa’s purpose has always been to co-create win-win for investors, portfolio companies, and society through aligning its vision and outcomes to the Sustainable Development Goals, ensuring a net-positive impact against ESG challenges, and the potential for long-term, sustainable outperformance.

In January this year, Summa announced the closing of its third fund – a €2.35 billion impact fund, which is to be invested in companies which solve the biggest challenges the world is facing. Summa invests in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the new fund has invested in, among others, Norway-based Tibber, a smart energy company that is active in several European markets.

Europe has been paving the way in driving impact through innovation, and Summa has been a critical part of it – having made 23 investments that advance the UN SDGs to date.  The expansion to the US is a reflection of its global vision for impact, but it’ll be interesting to see what this means for its European base and its plans for European startups going forward. 

Commenting, Summa founder and managing partner Reynir Indahl, said: “Summa has never been bound to its Nordic roots in the companies we work with. Our strategy is non-geographical, non-sector, and non-asset class specific. Opening a West Coast office is an extension of this approach: we are not just looking at American companies, but looking to attract and work with some of the world’s leading minds on how we can transform the world. Today’s interventions are the innovations of the past – Summa invests in global transformation.”

With the move, Summa also announces that they will be prioritizing companies in healthcare, as exponential technological advancements and innovations are rapidly expanding what is possible. In turn, this is creating fundamentally new avenues for impacting health and improving patient outcomes. Summa will be investing in assets that develop innovative and transformative solutions that make healthcare more predictive, preventive, personalized, and participative.

Summa partner and U.S. lead Tommi Unkuri added: “The Summa approach is very unique. In leading the Changing Demographics theme at Summa, we are seeking transformative companies that will deliver positive outcomes for communities across the globe and enable people to prosper. Such businesses typically deliver sustainable growth and achieve continued long-term success, whilst creating value for the wider public.”