Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP said Tuesday it has launched a Social Sector Finance (SSF) practice group.
Orrick’s SSF practice group focuses on the areas of microfinance, education, water, health, energy and housing. The firm said despite the importance of access to these services, funding for SSF organizations is often difficult to obtain, structure and invest in.
“Our long-standing pro bono work has allowed us to leverage and expand our knowledge and capabilities as well as develop relationships with non-governmental organizations and governmental agencies involved in SSF sectors,” said Cam Cowan, senior partner for the Transactional Division and a member of Orrick’s Executive Committee. “Through our prior pro bono work, we have discovered that few law firms operate in this space, and we view this as a unique opportunity for us to better support organizations pursuing SSF objectives.”
SSF – also known as Sustainable Investment or Socially Responsible Investment – is unlike traditional finance in that it has a “triple-bottom line” investment approach, the firm said. This means that SSF is geared towards achieving the investment objectives of financial return; social return; and environmental return.
SSF clients focus on building scalable, sustainable solutions for individuals and companies throughout the world.
Orrick has represented SSF clients in a wide range of pro bono. Since 2003, the firm has worked with leading SSF organizations including Calvert Foundation, CHF International, Enzi, Vittana, Water.org, MercyCorps and Kiva, and it currently represents a significant number of the largest and most active SSF organizations globally on both a pro bono and a paying basis. The firm also represents various SSF funds, capacity-building organizations, foundations and other key stakeholders.
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP is a global law firm with more than 1,100 lawyers in North America, Europe and Asia.