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Durreen Shahnaz, Pioneer in Social Impact & Founder of the World’s First Social Stock Exchange, Episode 309

Durreen Shahnaz, Pioneer in Social Impact & Founder of the World’s First Social Stock Exchange, Episode 309

Today’s guest, Durreen Shahnaz, is a story of a powerful, wickedly smart woman. She is a visionary disrupter reshaping the financial landscape while championing the marginalized. As a Bangladeshi-American entrepreneur, Durreen has boldly launched the world’s first stock revolutionizing our perceptions of finance and investment.

Get ready to be inspired as we talk about her journey from silence to empowerment, the impact investing ecosystem, how it’s evolving financial markets for the future and so much more.


In This Episode:

  • Durreen shares her journey from growing up with constrained life to working as the first Bangladeshi woman on Wall Street, to becoming a global leader in impact investing
  • How she started Impact Investment Exchange and her goal for SMEs to be appreciated not only just by their financial return but also the impact that they’re creating in terms of the social and environmental returns
  • The Women’s Livelihood Bond which is focused on creating livelihood for women since women have the hardest time raising more capital
  • Her new book, The Defiant Optimist: Daring to Fight Global Inequality, Reinvent Finance, and Invest in Women, and the strategies for placing women, the underserved, and the planet at the heart of systems
  • Why it’s important for us not to see ourselves through someone else’s lens


Durreen Shahnaz is the founder of Impact Investment Exchange (IIX) and IIX Foundation. Her work has helped thousands of entrepreneurs, investors, governments and impact stakeholders around the world to play a role in sustainable development and women’s empowerment. As a pioneer in social impact, Shahnaz has led IIX to create the world’s first social stock exchange, the largest crowdfunding platform for impact investing (Impact Partners) and innovative financial structures such as the Women’s Livelihood Bond series. Shahnaz developed industry benchmarks such as Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS), the generally accepted performance metrics for impact investors and is launching IIX Values, a technology-driven impact measurement and management platform.


“This whole notion of creating a whole new table where all of us are sitting across as equals is beautiful.” ~Durreen Shahnaz


To learn more about Durreen you can visit her website. You can also connect with her on FacebookInstagram, LinkedIn, or Twitter.

Durreen Shahnaz’s Show Notes


Get  20% off and free shipping on Durreen’s new book, The Defiant Optimist at Or use the code Defiant20!

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