Investment needs a radical redesign. New evidence is highlighting the barriers that underrepresented founders face. The Adebowale Commission has shown that social investment does not serve social entrepreneurs and institutional racism and other discrimination remain a critical problem.
Investing in diverse-led organisations is fundamental to addressing inequality in the UK but structural barriers in the social investment sector have created significant funding gaps for diverse-led founders and teams, directly impacting their opportunities for sustained growth and inhibiting their potential to create greater change.
Mathu Jeyaloganathan, Head of Investments at Big Issue Invest & UnLtd
The Growth Impact Fund is a social investment fund offering businesses investment and supporting entrepreneurs to grow their impact and sales. The fund is designed with under-represented founders in mind, with the goal of supporting organisations with diverse representation at board and leadership level. It is focused on reducing barriers to accessing investment, providing additional investment support, and grant funding.
Shift is working with Big Issue Invest and UnLtd who have partnered to create the Growth Impact Fund, specifically leading on the fund’s continuous learning. We aim to use these learnings and the fund’s influence to support the wider social investment sector to be more inclusive in supporting leaders to maximise their impact, irrespective of background.
- Fund launched in 2022, with investment from organisations including Bank of America and Access Foundation
- Goal to reach 120 diverse-led organisations with £25 million of investment and the support they need to grow