Ex-Credit Suisse exec joins social impact SPAC

Dana Barsky has joined The Growth for Good Acquisition Corporation, a newly formed “blank check company” focused on investing in firms that boast strong ESG/social impact aims.

She joins as president and a board member for the SPAC, which raised $253 million in its IPO in on Dec. 14, 2021. Previously, Barsky was global head of sustainable finance at Credit Suisse and brings with her unique skillsets and relationships across the private and public sectors in addition to capital markets and investment expertise.

“Dana is a highly experienced, well-recognized sustainable finance executive with significant capital markets, operations, and investment expertise,” said Growth for Good CEO Yana Watson Kakar in a statement. “We are pleased to welcome her to Growth for Good and look forward to leveraging her broad skillsets and deep relationships across the private and public sectors as we seek to identify companies positively impacting our world and poised for long-term growth.”

Growth for Good trades on Nasdaq and will look to merge with inclusive and environmentally sustainable companies where it believes its management team, board members and advisors have a competitive advantage based on their previous experiences and investments.

Kakar is a leader in sustainable and socially responsible business and the global managing partner emeritus of Dalberg Advisors, a multi-national advisory firm focused on social impact and environmental responsibility.

At Credit Suisse, Barsky worked with sustainable companies to finance their growth as well as with multi-national companies looking to transition to a lower carbon-intensive model. She is also credited with creating Credit Suisse’s sustainable activities framework that shaped the firm’s transactions, including blue bonds and wildlife conservation.

Before heading up sustainable finance efforts, Barsky served as chief operating officer and head of sustainable products and partnerships for Credit Suisse’s Sustainability Strategy, Advisory and Finance Department. She oversaw the group’s initiatives and developing sustainable investment products as well as promoting and financing projects that sought to close the funding gaps in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

She also worked with asset managers to bring third-party sustainable and impact funds to Credit Suisse’s private banking clients. Prior to Credit Suisse she assisted founding partners of Sagent Advisors launch an M&A boutique, and also served as a managing director at Golden Seeds, an investment firm focused on opportunities for early-stage women-led businesses.

“I am thrilled to join the Growth for Good team, whose commitment to inclusion and sustainability aligns perfectly with my own. The market opportunity for sustainability and inclusivity has never been stronger, and yet many companies devoted to these principles still require the right capital to scale their initiatives,” Barsky added in a statement. “I am eager to work closely with management and the Board to change that paradigm by helping to finance businesses with missions that complement our global net zero ambitions.”

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