In Pursuit of Readiness: Evaluation of the Investment and Contract Readiness Fund
The Investment and Contract Readiness Fund (ICRF) ensured that promising social ventures were better equipped to compete for public service contracts and secure other forms of investment. ICRF spent £13.2m and supported 155 ventures, with an average grant of £85k. This report, commissioned by Social Investment Business (SIB) and the Cabinet Office and undertaken by Ecorys, uses evidence from ventures, providers and investors to assess the impact of ICRF and makes recommendations for similar funds in the future.
Credit Suisse | Investing for impact: How social entrepreneurship is redefining the meaning of return
Investors are increasingly rejecting the notion that they face a binary choice between investing for maximum risk-adjusted financial return or donating money
to social and environmental causes. These impact investors are proactively using their investments to generate a tangible social or environmental impact,
while also having the potential for some financial return.
Guide to social investment tax relief for investors
Our short guide to social investment tax relief for investors explores the common questions, where to find examples of social investments, access deal flow and where to hear from investors already making these kinds of investments.
Cambridge Associates and the Global Impact Investing Network have collaborated to launch the Impact Investing Benchmark, the first comprehensive analysis of the financial performance of market rate private equity and venture capital impact investing funds. While the impact investing industry is in an early stage of development, it is poised for growth.
One of the chief barriers to industry advancement remains a paucity of robust research on financial performance. Credible data on risk and return can help both existing and future impact investors better identify strategies that best suit their desired social, environmental, and financial criteria.
Despite a perception among some investors that impact investing necessitates a concessionary return, the Impact Investing Benchmark has exhibited strong performance in several of the vintage years studied as of June 30, 2014. In aggregate, impact investment funds launched between 1998 and 2004—those that are largely realized—have outperformed funds in a
comparative universe of conventional PI funds. Over the full period analyzed, the benchmark has returned 6.9% to investors versus 8.1% for the comparative universe, but much of the performance in more recent years remains unrealized.
This is a hugely valuable resource that challenges many of the ideas abounding about what the commission is calling “social investment“, offering key recommendations to help grow this impact-orientated investment sector. From current definitions of social impact investment and discussions of the needs of social sector organisations (or “social enterprises“) to a very clear exploration of what we can do to help social investment work better.