A landmark investment fund, aimed at tackling the lack of diversity among people starting social enterprises, has been announced today – backed by the Big Issue.
Designed to help entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds change society, the Growth Impact Fund is a collaboration between Big Issue Invest, the investment arm of the Big Issue, along with partners UnLtd and Shift.
Investment in social enterprises has serious problems with inclusion – particularly with race – a report from the Adebowale Commission found this year.
Along with a lack of racial diversity, the fund hopes to eliminate barriers for disabled entrepreneurs, LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs, female-led companies, and those who have experienced the problems they are trying to fix.
Only social enterprises with 75 per cent of the board from one of these backgrounds – or who commit to improving their diversity – will be eligible for investment.
Sara Redford, Chair of the Social Impact Investment Committee for the Growth Impact Fund, said: “I have seen first-hand the frustrations that social purpose organisations and investors suffer.