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Investing at Home: CincyTech

Mike Collette opened a donor advised fund at The Greater Cincinnati Foundation when he decided that Cincinnati was his home.
 Mike Collette and Bob Coy
 Mike Collette, executive-in-residence at CincyTech, and Bob Coy, president/CEO. Mike is also a GCF donor and volunteer.
Mike Collette opened a donor advised fund at The Greater Cincinnati Foundation when he decided that Cincinnati was his home.

“I want to support the community,” the New York native said. “The more I learned about GCF, I realized what an impact it has in the community.”

Mike shares GCF’s interest in a revitalized urban core, where entrepreneurs with bright ideas bring jobs to the region. 

“There is a real synergy of what’s going on downtown and the entrepreneurship there,” Mike said. “They feed off each other.”

CincyTech is one of the organizations that is making this synergy happen. A seed-stage fund that invests in and provides management assistance to software and life science companies, CincyTech’s portfolio companies have created 833 jobs with a $79,000 average salary. The majority of these jobs are in our region.

GCF supports job creation and the work of CincyTech through Impact Investing and grants. Using charitable dollars, GCF and its donors invest in projects that can generate both social and financial returns. When principal and earnings are returned to donor advised funds, the resources can be reinvested in other Impact Investments or grants.

For Mike, Impact Investing was an opportunity to assist CincyTech through his donor advised fund. 

“Donate once, give twice,” he said. “That’s the way I look at it. Not only do I get a return on my investment, I get to make an impact on the community.” GCF and its donors invested $500,000 in CincyTech’s Funds II, III, and IV. Fund IV is projected to create at least 600 jobs in Southwest Ohio, each earning about $80,000 a year. 

“After the economic downturn, we needed not just to place people in jobs but to help create jobs here in Cincinnati,” said Robert Killins, Jr., program director of Vibrant Places. “We want to grow our local economy. Through CincyTech, we are investing in local businesses, investing in local jobs.

"The secondary return is the mindset change that young individuals view Cincinnati as a place for entrepreneurs,” he added. “They can get capital and mentorship through CincyTech to grow their businesses locally.”

“The work that we do and the redevelopment of the neighborhoods, it attracts people not only to the new companies, but the established ones like P&G,” said Bob Coy, president/CEO of CincyTech. “Everyone benefits.”

That’s an impressive return on an investment. 

To date, $11.8 million has been invested in community projects and funds through Impact Investing by The Greater Cincinnati Foundation and its donors. Mike Collette’s CincyTech investment was part of Generous Together. 

Published in the 2015 Annual Report to the Community.



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