In 1997 several Christian investment advisors became intrigued with the idea of Biblically Responsible Investing. Although in theory it was an interesting concept, they found there were few sources of information and virtually no financial products tailored to a Christian worldview. The result was that Patrick Johnson, one of those financial services advisors, launched Values Investment Forum, which later became the Biblically Responsible Investing Institute (BRII). The company was established with an eye to filling the research void for Christians and social conservatives.
BRII, specifically, is an investment research firm that examines publicly-traded companies for involvement in ten areas: abortion, alcohol, anti-family activity, bioethics, gambling, human rights, low-income financial services, pornography, tobacco and the homosexual agenda. Although other business activities could be included, BRII has identified these areas as clearly conflicting with biblical values. The alcohol, gaming and tobacco industries profit from man's addictions and weaknesses. Abortion, bioethics, and human rights relate to the sanctity of life. Pornography, anti-family activity and homosexuality undermine marriage and the family, while advancing destructive and impure lifestyles.
Within each of these ten broad areas (called screens), BRII has further delineated and defined specific activities (parameters). So, for example, within the alcohol and tobacco screens, BRII identifies publicly-traded manufacturers and wholesale distributors. Within the abortion screen, BRII identifies publicly-traded contributors to abortion-activist groups, insurers of elective abortions, manufacturers and distributors of abortifacients, and providers of elective abortion services. Furthermore, BRII has devised a system to weigh corporate actions by assigning a numerical rating to each parameter.
In an attempt to do all things in a manner worthy of the Lord, the Biblically Responsible Investing Institute places great emphasis on the accuracy and integrity of its research. The company has established an extensive research procedure that principally uses primary research sources. Consequently, company publications and announcements, Securities and Exchange Commission filings, available public tax records and direct communication with corporate management provide the basis of most BRII data. Furthermore, BRII's custom-designed database enables the company to document accurately its findings and to utilize its data.
BRII's services are marketed to institutions (colleges, denominations, churches, etc.), institutional investment advisors (those who work with institutions), financial product sponsors (mutual funds, annuities, etc.) and retail investment advisors (those who advise individual clients). The company's services are primarily fourfold:
1. Provide accurate research on publicly-traded companies.
2. Assist the client in identifying and weighing the specific BRII screens and parameters that align with his convictions.
3. Provide customized reports that guide the client in tailoring his portfolio to his convictions.
4. Assist the client in reassessment as new social issues and events unfold in the culture.
Biblically Responsible Investing Institute
2514 Plantation Center Drive
Matthews, NC 28105