The Issachar Fund is committed to clean, institutional ESG validation. We believe this is the right thing to do, both for the world and for portfolio returns. We are proud to partner with Inspire, a leading faith-based ESG screen provider to ensure we are investing in companies with positive ESG scores and avoiding companies with negative scores due to problematic issues. To accomplish this, we use the Inspire Impact Score methodology to screen our fund.
How the Inspire Impact Score Works
The Inspire Impact Score is a faith-based ESG (environment, social, governance) security selection methodology that seeks to identify the most inspiring, biblically aligned companies in the world. The Inspire Impact Score utilizes both positive inclusionary and negative exclusionary screens in the scoring process. The result is a rules-based system of finding companies which are operating as blessings to their customers, communities, workforce and the world, and excluding companies which are operating at odds with biblical values.
Following are definitions of the positive and negative screens used in the Inspire Impact Score methodology.
Every company starts with zero points
Exclusionary screens are applied to companies which operate at odds with biblical values. Negative points are assigned to the impact score if any violations are found. These companies are always excluded from investment.
Companies with no negative violations are then positively scored across nine categories based on how they operate as blessings to their customers, communities, workforce and the world. Positive points are assigned based on the extent to which the company has above average scores in those positive categories.
Companies are scored on a scale between -100 and +100, with scores above zero representing better alignment with biblical values. Issachar only invests in companies with scores of zero or higher, making LIONX a Biblically Responsible Investing Fund .
Points are awarded for above average “best in class” practices in the following areas.
Business products, services and operations structured in a way to benefit rather than exploit customers.
Creates products and services which are helpful and create value rather than extract value or harm users.
Policies and behaviors regarding executive comp, ethical dealings, board management, etc.
Policies and behaviors regarding equitable employee management.
Impact and influence on society and communities in which the company operates.
Measures the ethical integrity throughout supply chain, including issues such as human trafficking, fair compensation and labor conditions.
Measures company’s impact on the environment, including air, water and land.
Measures company’s use and production of sustainable energy.
Companies with exposure to any of the following issues will always score below zero and are excluded from investment.
- Providing abortion procedures.
- Procurement or use of embryonic stem cells.
- Corporate guided philanthropy to organizations that advocate for or provide abortions. (Excludes employee matching programs.)
- Corporate sponsored political, legal or other activism that advocates for or provides abortions.
- Manufacture, sale, distribution or consumption of any product or service which involves or is designed specifically to support abortion procedures.
Manufacture, sale or distribution of pornographic content.
- Known use of slave labor, child labor, forced labor, and other unjust labor exploitation, directly or indirectly throughout the supply chain, including partnerships and subsidiaries.
- Purposeful neglect or abuse of people, including employees, suppliers, contractors and others in the supply chain.
- Manufacture, sale, distribution or consumption of any product or service which involves or is designed specifically to support terrorist or terrorist sponsoring organizations and governments.
- Discrimination against any people group, including employees, customers, suppliers and others.
- Manufacture, sale, distribution or consumption of any product or service which purposefully exploits and/or harms people through addiction or other predatory practices.
- Corporate guided philanthropy to organizations that advocate for hate, exploitation and/or human rights violations.
- Corporate sponsored legal, political and social activism that advocates for hate, exploitation and/or human rights violations.
- Corporate guided philanthropy to organizations that advocate for the promotion and acceptance of the LGBT lifestyle. (Excludes employee match programs).
- Corporate sponsored legal, political or other activism that advocates for the promotion and acceptance of the LGBT lifestyle.
- Manufacture, sale, distribution or consumption of any product or service which involves or is designed specifically to support the LGBT lifestyle.
*Note: There is an important difference between support for the LGBT lifestyle and support and care for LGBT individuals. The Inspire Impact Score is carefully designed to support LGBT individuals, while opposing advocacy for the LGBT lifestyle. Providing employee benefits to LGBT employees, for instance, shows support and love for LGBT people but does not necessarily support LGBT as an acceptable lifestyle. Likewise, there may be other actions that companies can take that support LGBT individuals, but not the LGBT lifestyle, and it should not be considered a violation of Inspire Impact Score screens for them doing so.
Manufacture or sale of alcoholic beverages.
Manufacture or sale of tobacco products.
Ownership or operation of gambling facilities, either physical or Internet-based.