HSBC injects £4m into Big Issue Invest Social Enterprise Fund

Latest funding round brings total raised to £8m

A fund providing growth capital to ambitious social enterprises has received backing from HSBC to the tune of £4m.

The Big Issue Invest Social Enterprise Investment Fund secured a total of £4.5m in its third funding round, of which HSBC provided £4m in one of the bank’s first major investments within the social enterprise space.

The investment brings the total raised so far to £8m; previous investors have included Deutsche Bank, The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, and the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts (NESTA).

The fund was set up to provide social entrepreneurs with “creatively structured” capital, utilising a range of funding options including debt, equity and mezzanine finance. It aims to provide investors with a dual return, by generating both a positive social impact and financial returns in excess of 5%.

Big Issue Invest is now looking to raise a further £2m to hit its closing target of £10m by March 2012.

Nigel Kershaw (pictured), CEO of Big Issue Invest, said: “We are delighted with the support we have received to date and in particular to have received this major investment from HSBC that takes us one step closer to achieving our target of £10m.”

Launched in 2009 by Big Issue Invest, the financial arm of The Big Issue which funds social ventures, the Social Enterprise Investment Fund has already channelled £1.1m into four social enterprises, with a further three investments worth £1.4m now approved.

The fund was created to offer social enterprises with the potential to deliver a significant social impact access to finance to enable them to grow.


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