Social Investment

Introduction
We provide social investment in the form of different types of repayable finance to charities and other not-for-profit organisations, with the aim of creating social impact. Social investment is a different way of funding charitable activities.

We look to make investments that meet the aims of our funding strategy and achieve high social impact as well as a financial return. For example, we can invest in start-up projects or enterprises, innovative models or services aiming to address social issues, organisations looking to scale or move towards longer term financial sustainability. Our investments include loans, bonds, equity, and underwriting.

Since 2008 we have made over 120 social investments. We can commit up to £45m in social investments. We invest in a diverse range of organisations including charities, social enterprises, community benefit societies and other social investment funds.



How does it work?

We are an impact first investor, this means the social investments we make aim to achieve a high social impact as well as a financial return and be a good fit with our funding priorities.

  • Our social investments take a variety of forms, we work with an organisation to assess its business model and the type of finance needed to support the work in order to structure an appropriate investment.
  • We do not have set interest rates or repayment terms; it all depends on the type of investment, what the organisation is aiming to achieve and what the social impact is likely to be.
  • We support both revenue and capital projects with social investment
  • Our social investments include loans, charity bonds, equity, revenue participation agreements and Social Impact Bonds (SIBs). Our Jargon Buster explains these different types of investments in more detail.

  • The minimum size of investment is £60,000.

Download our quick 1-page guide for further information.


Making an application

If you are thinking about applying for a social investment you can submit a first stage application or if you have an idea you would like to discuss with a member of our team before you apply please email us at info@esmeefairbairn.org.uk

For information on the differences between our grant funding exclusions and social investment exclusions or if you have any questions, you may find our FAQs helpful as a starting point. 


Other social investment funds

To find out more about social investment including some of the other investors available please visit the Good Finance website.


Social Investments 2016 commited by sector

 


Social investments commited by product type