Durreen Shahnaz, an investment banker and media executive-turned-Social Entrepreneur from Bangladesh, is the founder of IIX, the home of the world’s first social stock exchange and the world’s largest private placement platform for impact investing. Shahnaz also founded IIX Foundation. To date, IIX’s work has impacted lives of over 10 million people across Asia.
Shahnaz began her career at Morgan Stanley in New York City and worked at Grameen Bank, World Bank, Merrill Lynch, Hearst Magazines, and Reader’s Digest.
Shahnaz taught, conducted research on impact measurement and ran the Program for Social Innovation and Change at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. In addition, she founded, ran, and sold oneNest, an Impact Enterprise and global marketplace for handmade goods which impacted lives of more than half million women across the world.
Shahnaz holds a BA from Smith College; a joint degree — MBA from the Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania and MA from the School for Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. Shahnaz is the 2014 recipient of the prestigious Joseph Wharton Social Impact award. Shahnaz was an appointed member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Social Innovation and Advisor for CASE i3 at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. She is the Social Entrepreneur in Residence for INSEAD’s Social Entrepreneurship Catalyst Program. Shahnaz is also a TED speaker and a regular guest on Channel News Asia’s program ‘Views on News’ and BBC.
Shahnaz is a published author of academic papers and thought pieces on social finance space. Shahnaz serves as a Program Advisor for the Clinton Global Initiative and is on the Board of Advisor for National Book Development Council of Singapore’s Asian Festival of Children’s Content promoting Asian children’s literature across the globe. Shahnaz currently serves on the Advisory Board of UNDP Innovation Facility and UNESCAP Trade, Investment and Innovation Division. Shahnaz is the 2014 recipient of the prestigious Joseph Wharton Social Impact award, 2016 recipient of the Asia Society’s Asia Game Changer Awards and 2017 recipient of the Oslo Business for Peace Award.
Robert is Managing Director of IIX and a member of the Board of IIX Foundation, formerly known as Shujog, as well as its Treasurer.
Prior to joining the impact investing movement, Robert spent nearly 20 years in the traditional capital markets as an advisor and investor, most recently as head of Asian private equity for Marathon Asset Management, a US$12 billion alternative investment manager. Prior to that, Robert was head of investment banking, Asia ex-Japan, for Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein. Robert began his career at Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse and Wasserstein Perella.
In addition to his work at IIX, Robert is a member of Singapore’s ‘President’s Challenge Social Enterprise Awards’ Committee. He also acts as Senior Advisor to Asian Tiger Capital, an innovative financial services firm in Bangladesh offering research, advisory and asset management services. Robert is co-author of the chapter on “Social and Environmental Exchanges” in New Frontiers of Philanthropy, recently published by Oxford University Press. Robert is a prolific speaker on impact investing in Asia and lectures on the topic across the globe. Robert has also acted as a judge for various social enterprise business plan competitions, including the Global Social Venture Competition in Berkeley, California.
Robert holds a B.A. magna cum laude from Princeton University, and a J.D. summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania, School of Law. Robert has lectured on M&A as an Adjunct Professor in the MBA program of Singapore Management University.