Is social investment right for you? Do you know what social investment is? Who provides social investment? Where you can get social investment?

What is social investment?

Social investment is finance provided to VCSE organisations where investors expect to get their investment back and see something that has a positive impact on society either by addressing a specific social problem, supporting a local area/group of people. Often referred to as ‘social value’.

Social Investors

Money is provided by specialist banks, individuals, charitable trusts, and organisations/funds that have specifically been set up to make social investments. They are all set up slightly differently but investors will:

*expect to get their money back, normally with interest

*want to see evidence of a positive social change as a result of their investment

Social investment is not a grant or a donation

It is important to understand that social investment is money provided to an organisation to enable that organisation to generate more income and/or be more effective. Social investment is:

*about growing a business, putting better systems in place, and ultimately having an improved impact on society.

Big Potential

One type of social investment is Big Potential which is a Big Lottery grant fund. It is managed by The Social Investment Business (SIB) with the aim of improving the sustainability, capacity and scale of Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) organisations in order that they may deliver a greater social impact.

Depending on the value of investment you want to raise there are two different options:

Big Potential Breakthrough for VCSE organisations wanting to raise repayable investment of up to £500,000

*Preliminary Grant (repayable investment some way off) between £20,000 and £30,000 to consider options and types of investment

*Investment Growth (aim for repayable investment within 6-12 months)

*Investment Plan Grants are available to VCSE organisations that already have a social investment proposition and know what the deal might look like. VCSEs can apply for an Investment Plan Grant between £40,000 and £50,000

*VCSEs can apply for both type of grant but SIB would not expect any one organisation to receive more than £75,000 in total

Big Potential Advanced for VCSEs wanting to raise repayable investment over £500,000 and or bid for contracts over £1million

*Investment Readiness Grants available between £50,000 and £150,000

Want to know more?

If you think social investment is for you and want to know more about the opportunities with Big Potential and want to have a chat please get in touch.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *