The Walton’s are one of the richest families on earth with a combined wealth of $163.2 billion dollar (according to Bloomberg). This articles focuses on an interesting Walton Family Office, which is featured in our list of single family offices in the United States and run by Sam Walton’s grandson Ben Walton and his wife Lucy ana: ZOMA Lab.
Using the family office money for impact investing
Most families are investing in a quite traditional way (see: Which asset classes are family offices investing in?): equity stakes in industrial firms, stock markets, bonds, real estate. ZOMA is here an exception: the firm combines a foundation and investment arm – both addressing “environmental and social challenges”. ZOMA Capital invests in Chile and Colorado with three different approaches. First, the firm tackles problems in the energy market through the development of technologies for challenges in the renewable energy industry. ZOMA wants to transform Colorados energy landscape, which is still largely driven by coal, to a higher share of renewables. Second, the Walton-run Family Office aims to reduce water scarcity through the development of innovative water procurement methods and data shortage prediction systems. Third, the company wants to support economic opportunities, for instance through the support of “entrepreneurial ecosystems” and support and training of individuals.
Investments of ZOMA Capital in energy companies
If we take a look at specific investments of ZOMA, we see lots of high volume investments in energy companies. For example, ZOMA led a $130M round of financing for the Guzman Energy Group together with Vision Ridge Partners. Guzman Energy is a wholesale energy company that engages in rural areas and aims to achieve “lower rates and higher price stability” through the use of renewables. ZOMA also led a C$200M round of financing for Amp Solar group, which is a Canadian global developer of clean energy infrastrucutre.
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Picture source: Zbynek Burival
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