What if philanthropy could financially sustain itself — or better yet, turn a profit?

I have long been involved in venture capital because I love the can-do mindset of entrepreneurs who seek to solve real problems and make lasting differences. People who believe in their ability to change the world can do powerful things, and I’ve been lucky enough to use my experiences as an entrepreneur to help others realize their visions.

By funding companies with causes, either with the business problems they solve or the philanthropic initiatives they support, investors can become part of the wheel that changes the world. I seek out organizations that aim to sustainably break the cycle of poverty and/or increase human potential to thrive. As more investors get involved with impact investing, the benefits and opportunities for betterment will grow exponentially.

Like it or not, though, we live in a capitalistic system. Investors and philanthropists overlap in several places, but investors want to see their investments grow. Last year, 351 investment funds managed $161 billion. What would happen if those funds spent their money on initiatives that also generated legitimate social good and community improvement?

Financing good causes does not mean investors have to shun their expectations of profit. It is my belief that the best impact investing can create both positive impact and return on investment.

Money, Power, And The Truth About High-Level Investing

People with capital to invest have a greater say in which companies succeed and fail. Some rare businesses can break through without outside funding, but in most cases, founders must convince investors that their companies can thrive.

Read the rest of Ashley Merrill’s article at Forbes