Catherine Berman is CEO and cofounder of CNote, an innovative fintech platform that unlocks new investment opportunities for retail and institutional investors. Working with mission-aligned community lenders, CNote aims to close the wealth gap by allowing anyone to invest in small businesses, affordable housing and economic development in financially underserved communities, with a focus on lending to women and minorities.
Berman, a three-time entrepreneur who has built and scaled multimillion-dollar businesses, left traditional financial services on a mission to build a more inclusive economy… She co-founded CNote with Yuliya Tarasava, (COO) in 2016 to solve that problem. The two women-who have decades of financial industry experience-wanted to create financial products that decrease inequality…
Catherine Berman: “I want to build a more equal world-one where new immigrants like my mother would have the same opportunity my daughter has today.” …
“CNote offers fixed income and cash alternative investments. We map our investments to our 26 proprietary impact themes along with the UN Sustainable Goals. Our strongest impact investment categories include racial justice, climate crisis, immigration and refugee issues, and gender equality.”
“We can create personalized bonds that reflect the return, maturity and impact a client seeks. It starts with data. Our robust database… allows us to hyper-customize fixed-income vehicles for clients… This means you can create a fixed income bond that invests in your own backyard (“Invest in Brooklyn”) or one that invests in the movements you care about (“Invest in Wealth Creation for Women of Color.”)
…In the future, do you see instruments like the ones you create being part of every socially conscious investors portfolio?
“Absolutely. If you have access to fixed income products that not only meet your return and maturity needs but also create more of the world you want to live in, why wouldn’t you? We seek to create options where you don’t have to choose between your return and your values. By meeting investors where they are, we can deliver competitive returns by investing in the areas that matter most to clients.”