Natasha is the 3rd generation of a SouthEast Asian family business active in manufacturing and retail in the outdoor textile sector. She holds a BA in Geography from Nottingham University and a Masters in the Political Economy of Violence, Conflict and Development from SOAS University.
Her first foray into impact investing began in 2012 when an advisor suggested an investment in a solar park. Instead of simply investing in the park, the family bought it, and to this day, Natasha says that “it’s one of the best performing assets in our portfolio”. New to this world, Natasha knew that she had to build her investment acumen. With that in mind she joined all the pertinent networks she could find to meet and learn from like-minded people. Such networks include TONIIC, CREO, and The Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN); she further enrolled in Harvard University’s Impact Investing for the Next Generation program, a collaborative course between Harvard, University of Zurich, and the World Economic Forum.
In 2016 Natasha founded NM Impact Ltd – an independent investment vehicle that aims to inspire, motivate, and connect like-minded Next Gens in an effort to catalyze a global ecosystem of local change-makers. This next-gen impact investor and philanthropist has since been managing her own portfolio of investments in alignment with her values.
“To have impact you don’t necessarily have to invest your financial capital,” she says. “You can also invest your human capital, your time, your efforts. You can convene people around a theme and have a lot of impact that way, too.”
Natasha sees impact investing growing to the mainstream and the mythology surrounding it — the assumption that impact investing requires a sacrifice on returns — is disappearing. However, she is concerned about a potential greenwashing effect; investment banks could claim to be involved in impact investing, but, in fact, they’re not.
Natasha’s hard work and drive for impact is informed by who she is and her experiences growing up. Her father lived with Bipolar Disorder and Depression and died by suicide when Natasha was just 17. The experience of deep trauma, as well as the burn out, depression and suicide of others close to her, have shown Natasha the importance of a loving and supportive network – something she knows not everyone is fortunate enough to have.
It is her first-hand experiences that have made mental health Natasha’s passion and her priority.
Today, Natasha’s mission is to get mental health destigmatized and prioritized on the global level. She was the first individual funder to United for Global Mental Health and currently sits on the board of trustees, working closely with them to increase government financing of mental health initiatives worldwide. She also works with Footage Foundation, a non-profit that focuses on at-risk women and girls; Empower, a Harvard Medical School initiative that seeks to enable non-specialist health workers to learn, master, and deliver evidence-based psychological treatments for a wide range of mental health and substance use problems via a digital learning environment; NEXUS, on their mental health advisory board; and Co-Impact, a global philanthropic collaborative.
Natasha brings compassion and empathy do all areas of her work. Her experiences have made her aware of the need to address the injustices that go unnoticed and to invest in a more sustainable lifestyle that puts what she refers to as ‘The 3 C’s’ – compassion, community, and connection – at the center.