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Funding: Big Society Capital

Status:
Open to applications
Start Date:
04 April 2012

Description

Investments are available to Social Investment Finance Intermediaries (SIFIs) based and working within the UK for projects tackling major social issues within the UK.


Details

Maximum Value:
£ 15,000,000
Minimum Value:
£ 500,000

Value Notes

Loan investment of between £500,000 and £15 million.

The following types of investments are available:

  • Capitalisation and balance sheet growth: core equity capital to build stronger SIFIs that are able to raise further private investment and so provide more capital to the social sector.
  • Risk and working capital: acting as the lead investor in the developing and piloting of financial products and funds that provide risk and working capital to the social sector.
  • Sustainability and operational growth: providing medium to long-term capital to SIFIs to enable them to achieve sustainability and scale, and therefore to increase the volume of affordable finance that they can offer the social sector.
  • Market mechanisms and infrastructure: acting as lead investor and/or providing underwriting for the development of market infrastructure.
  • Advice, skills and information: providing direct equity and loan investment to SIFIs developing and providing financial advisory/corporate finance services to help social sector organisations build the skills and capacity required to take on investment.

Big Society Capital seeks both a social and a financial return from every investment it makes.


Extended Description

Big Society Capital is a new independent financial institution. It will invest in Social Investment Finance Intermediaries (SIFIs) that provide appropriate and affordable finance and support to social sector organisations that are working to tackle social problems in the UK. Big Society Capital will not be providing funding or finance directly to frontline social sector organisations, but will work through intermediaries.


Latest Information

Expressions of Interest may be submitted at any time.


Key Criteria

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • Be a Social Investment Finance Intermediary (SIFIs) providing investment and other support to social sector organisations that primarily benefit people and communities in the UK.
  • Be registered and working within the UK.
  • Have a strong management team and good corporate governance systems.
  • Have a robust business plan and financial model with realistic underlying assumptions.
  • Have a clear social mission with well-developed systems for delivering it and monitoring social impact.

Eligible Expenditure

Investments are made in SIFIs which provide finance and other support to social sector organisations that primarily benefit people and communities in the UK.

SIFIs should be providing investment and support in the following areas:

  • Children and Families – early intervention for improving the quality of life for at-risk children, young people and vulnerable families.
  • Community regeneration – construction, renovation and purchase of community facilities and assets such as arts, sports, libraries, shops and community centres, including engaging the community in using, running and owning community assets.
  • Disability – support for people with disabilities to ensure they have equal opportunities.
  • Education – creating opportunities to improve the aspirations, attitudes and behaviour of children and adults through eduction.
  • Employment – creation of long-term employment opportunities through training, skills, jobs and mentoring.
  • Financial inclusion – providing credit, debt advice, savings insurance and financial literacy for those who cannot access mainstream financial services.
  • Health and social care – support and services in the medical and health sector to improve access for the underserved.
  • Housing and shelter – immediate and long term shelter and housing needs and specialist support services related to social housing and tenancy issues.
  • Infrastructure – providing finance, support, advisory services and market infrastructure to social sector organisations.
  • Mental health – services and support to help people with mental health problems.
  • Young people and children – youth services and early intervention in terms of youth offending and rehabilitation.

Further information and case studies of the type of investments made are available on the Big Society Captial website.


Match Funding Restrictions

Match funding is not a stipulated requirement.


Restrictions

The following are not eligible for funding:

  • Frontline social sector organisations such as social enterprises, charities, and other not-for-profit organisations, which are providing services directly to people and communities.
  • Shell investment vehicles or ownerless orphan investment structures/funds.
  • SIFIs investing in or providing support to social sector organisations that deliver only environmental impact.
  • SIFIs without a clear and well-articulated social mission.
  • SIFIs without a base in the UK or which provide support to social sector organisations that primarily benefit people and communities outside the UK.

Social sector organisations looking for support can access a directory of intermediaries on the Big Society Capital website.


Application Procedure

There is a three-stage application process. Initially an Expression of Interest form should be submitted. Those who are successful at this stage will be invited to fill out a full application form and submit a full business plan and financial model. Successful applicants will then have a period for the due diligence process which includes a visit to the applicant’s office, interviews, scenario testing of financial models and a review of social impact reporting.

More than one Expression of Interest may be submitted.

Expressions of Interest may be submitted at any time.

Contact the Big Capital Society for further information.

Please note that Big Society Capital will not be providing funding or finance directly to frontline social sector organisations, but will work through intermediaries.


Addresses and contacts

For further information on how to obtain this funding opportunity locally, please contact the following:

Contact details:
Enquiries Big Society Capital
72-78 Fleet Street
London
EC4Y 1HY
Telephone:
020 7186 2500