Night of Networking
In a meeting of the minds, the Wharton Club of Japan hosted an evening aimed at connecting alumni interested in health care. The networking event — the first of its kind for the club — drew 31 attendees and was emceed by Eriko Matsumoto WG17, with opening remarks by Takuma Nakatsuka WG91. It was held at the Bistro En Ballon restaurant in January.
San Francisco, USA
Companies may strive for gender diversity in the workplace, but getting there takes more than talk. Addressing this issue in a panel event on campus in January: Iris Choi WG04, a partner at investment firm Floodgate; Lulu Ge WG19, founder and CEO of women’s wellness company Elix; and Na’ama Moran, co-founder and CEO of restaurant food supplier Cheetah Technologies. The speakers discussed how startups can address Silicon Valley’s gender gap with Wharton associate professor of management Ethan Mollick. The event also included an overview of Wharton’s latest research on how gender diversity impacts startup performance as well as scaling challenges that are unique to female founders.
Changing the Game
Classmates Robert Hornsby WG00, a co-founder of American Homebuilders of West Africa, and Ameet Dhillon WG00, managing director of US-Africa Housing Finance, are disrupting the home-building (and home-buying) market in Africa with a unique business partnership. Here’s how: Through American Homebuilders, Hornsby and his fellow business leaders are constructing houses in Guinea that Dhillon — who has invested in Hornsby’s venture — provides financing for, in order to help people purchase the homes. In a country where accessing financial products such as mortgages usually isn’t an option, that’s a game changer. With plans to expand further into Africa, Dhillon and Hornsby aim to provide affordable and accessible housing across the continent.
Diana Robertson, vice dean and director of Wharton’s undergraduate division, visited alumni in Florida for an evening of fine art hosted by Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz W62 WG63. At the de la Cruz Collection in Miami’s design district in January, Robertson spoke to more than 60 attendees about the School’s student makeup, its academic priorities, and more in a space featuring an array of contemporary artists.
A Sweet Endeavor
It’s fitting that Brian Finkel W10 met fellow D’vash Organics co-founder David Czinn during a gap year in Jerusalem. Syrup made from dates — which their company sells along with a lineup of date and sweet-potato nectars — is particularly popular in the Middle East and Africa, and now the two entrepreneurs are bringing it to the U.S. Read more about their venture in the Watchlist.
The Best of Intentions
Even the most well-meaning plans can have unintended consequences. That’s especially true for governments aiming to enact environmental policies, according to Wharton’s Arthur van Benthem. In “When Going Green Doesn’t Go as Planned,” the assistant professor of business economics and public policy details how some measures put in place to combat climate change may in reality exacerbate conditions.
Global Forum Updates
As a result of safe distancing measures announced by the Singapore Ministry of Health in March, the Wharton Global Forum in Singapore has been canceled. All registration fees will be refunded; please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. The San Francisco Global Forum is still scheduled for October 1–2 and will include guest speaker Sundar Pichai WG02. For our exclusive interview with the Google/Alphabet CEO, see “Sundar Pichai WG02 Wants to Change Your Life.”
Published as “Wharton’s Global Impact” in the Spring/Summer 2020 issue of Wharton Magazine.