News story

P2P Impact Fund: social enterprises get £2 million boost

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

A new fund will help social organisations source investment through peer-to-peer and crowdfunding platforms.

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A new £2 million fund to will help people invest in causes they care about through peer-to-peer (P2P) and crowdfunding platforms.

The new P2P Impact Fund will enable regulated social sector organisations, eg social enterprises and charities, to take on investment through the thriving crowdfunding market.

Research by Social Enterprise UK in 2013 shows that access to finance is the single biggest barrier to social enterprises’ growth and sustainability. Findings also showed that the median amount of finance that social enterprises seek is only £58,000,which is below the minimum threshold offered by specialist social investment finance intermediaries.

The fund will also help encourage more people to get involved with the social investment market, which seeks social as well as financial returns and can benefit a whole range of organisations.

The Cabinet Office set up the Fund and it is administered by The Social Investment Business (SIB), one of the UK’s leading social investment organisations. The Social Investment Business has invested more than £340 million in 1,300 charities and social enterprises since 2002.

Jonathan Jenkins, CEO, Social Investment Business, said:

The P2P Impact Fund is an interesting pilot fund and represents another positive addition to the social investment market. At the Social Investment Business we’re always trying to find innovative solutions to increasing the finance available to charities and social enterprises and we look forward to working with the Cabinet Office on a pilot fund that is aiming to do just that.

How the fund will work

The P2P Impact Fund will be run as a pilot to enable social ventures to access alternative finance platforms by providing funds that can be drawn upon in the event of default. This aims to build evidence about people using alternative finance platforms to lend money to charities and social enterprise.

The Social Investment Business is having preliminary discussions with potential P2P platforms. The Cabinet Office will announce which platforms have been successful later in the year.

Find out more about social investment.

Published 23 March 2015