ClearlySo raises £800,000 to help support social entrepreneurs
Big Society Capital and Body Shop co-founder amongst backers of social impact investment intermediary
Social venture company ClearlySo has secured £804,000 in a deal led by existing investors social investment bank Big Society Capital (BSC) and a number of private investors, including The Body Shop co-founder Gordon Roddick.
The deal marks BSC’s first ever follow-on investment on top of the £1m it committed to ClearySo in July 2012.
ClearlySo helps to raise investment for socially-minded businesses, charities and funds while making returns for investors and has directly raised £16.4m of impact investment for over 40 clients; such as a £1.25m deal from Big Issue Invest and Bridges Ventures for social enterprise London Early Years Foundation.
It also runs Clearly Social Angels, the UK’s “first” social impact orientated angel network, which has invested in 20 deals since 2012 including Commonplace, Breezie, and Brain in Hand.
The company intends to use this latest funding to develop its position as a key player in the sector and “build a healthier, more sustainable economy for all”.
ClearlySo CEO, Rodney Schwartz, discussed the investment: “The difference in attitude between this and previous investment rounds was palpable, and reflected the change in how the social impact investment sector is seen in general.
“Previously, the investment could have been seen as ‘soft money’ – and many of our investors were friends and family taking, at best, a long-term view. This time around, our shares were oversubscribed, and we could have raised even more. Commercially-minded angels now see ClearlySo as an attractive investment which is also supporting and enabling dozens of socially impactful firms to raise capital and generate enormous social impact.”
Investor Roddick continued: “The legendary persistence of Schwartz has brought together a group of people, money and ideas that can benefit us all”.