When the American Cancer Society launched BrightEdge – our donor-funded impact investment fund – in 2019, our goal was to build a sustainable source of financial support for our mission by investing in for-profit companies that develop cutting-edge cancer therapies and technologies, driving solutions for all patients to detect and survive cancer.
Today, BrightEdge has emerged from the pandemic and is going strong, demonstrating impact, realizing returns, and supporting technologies that align with our efforts to save lives from cancer.
BrightEdge builds on ACS's rich history of leadership in cancer research and addressing healthcare disparities. The fund seeks to invest in promising science, entrepreneurs, and health care companies that are poised to translate today's most promising cancer-focused technologies into accessible solutions to improve patient outcomes. BrightEdge realizes returns on its investment when these companies go public or are acquired. Those funds can then be reinvested in BrightEdge and used to fuel ACS's lifesaving mission.
BrightEdge is currently in a growth phase – building the fund through investments that will create sustainability for reinvestment in the organization. So far, the fund has made nine investments, realizing $9.14 million in gains, which have been reinvested back into the fund.
BrightEdge has had a tremendous amount of momentum in 2021. In January, Alice Pomponio – a seasoned life sciences and impact investment executive and a former ACS Eastern New England Area Board and ACS CAN Board member – signed on as the fund's managing director. Already, she secured the fund's most significant external donor gift to date – a $1 million donation from PDB Foundation. This is the foundation's first major gift to ACS. $750,000 of the gift will support BrightEdge, with $250,000 supporting the American Cancer Society AstraZeneca Hope Lodge in Boston.
BrightEdge has set an ambitious fundraising and portfolio performance target to help grow the fund to $100 million over the next three years. For more on BrightEdge, please visit www.brightedgefund.org or contact your staff partner.