Big Society Capital has released its latest Annual Review covering the year 2018, revealing £90 million of new commitments were made over the year. Alongside other investors, the organisation has also made £1.7 billion available for social enterprises and charities as they tackle some of the toughest social issues faced by people in the UK.
Since its inception over 1,141 social enterprises and charities across the UK have now accessed repayable finance through Big Society Capital’s social fund managers or Charity Bank. Of the 1,141 a total of 73 per cent are located in 50 per cent of the most deprived areas of the UK, and 83 per cent operate outside of London or nationally.
Cliff Prior, CEO of Big Society Capital, commented:
‘Throughout 2018, we accelerated our efforts to create change in our three key themes of homes, places, and early action, whilst also developing a strong pipeline of investments. As a result, our strategy of focusing on areas where we believe social investment can have the greatest impact began to bear fruit, with initial investments in the theme areas as well as building partnerships, knowledge and opportunities, enabling us to deliver more in 2019.
‘We also began work on our impact measurement and management approach, which is aligned with the vision and strategy of key partners. We intend to capture the impact on communities, social enterprises and charities, as well as the impact from supporting stakeholders to work together more effectively. Our impact approach will develop as more projects go live in 2019.
‘In 2018 the organisation experienced a loss of £6.5 million, which is typical of an early stage portfolio such as ours. Our long term aim is to generate positive financial returns and social impact on a continuing basis to demonstrate both impact and financial viability, as well as covering our operational and market building costs.
‘As we move further into 2019, we remain focused on championing the sector, increasing the use of social impact investment and building understanding with social enterprises, charities and investors.’
The full Annual Review can be found on Big Society Capital’s website here.