Deal level data | Big Society Capital

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Deal level data

Deal Level Data is a list of social investments into charities and social enterprises, both through BSC’s portfolio and by other investors in the social investment arena. The latest Deal Level Data release can be seen in our blog. Scroll down for links to all previous releases.

Here is a bit more info and thinking behind this data set:

Why? The purpose of the deal-level data is to show broader social investment activity reaching charities and social enterprises; the investors who are making those investments; and what outcome area and beneficiary group those investments are focusing on.

Who? We invite all social investors in the UK to contribute, which we define as investors who are targeting social outcomes. The basis of this data is investments made by intermediaries and funds that Big Society Capital has invested in, with a number of other investors which we have not directly invested in (such as Triodos, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and CAF Venturesome) voluntarily submitting their data because of the systemic benefits they see in data transparency. Not all the social investors we have asked have agreed to release data.

Deal-level data includes the investments made by intermediaries and funds that Big Society Capital have invested in, as well as those in which we have not invested.

Approach? The original aim of the deal-level data was to not let the best be the enemy of the good; as such, we have rolled it out with a minimum viable product mind-set and with each release, we try to improve it. The deal-level data is refreshed and released twice a year. The measure used is the £ amount committed by the intermediary to the frontline. Deal-level data is a growing data set and does not yet look at repayments or performance. We invite all contributors to update a shared google sheet, and we aim to make the process as efficient as possible, to minimise the burden on intermediaries. We spend time cleansing the data so that it can be analysed by outcome area, beneficiary group, legal form and asset lock of the investee.

Social impact metrics

In addition to the deal level data we have also published the metrics investees are using to measure their impact. We ask this of all our investees, and by making the data public, we hope it will be used by organisations addressing similar social challenges to learn from their peers. The publication of this data will also create the framework for us to report on organisations’ impact in the future.

Caveats

As with previous data releases, there are a number of caveats one needs to take into account when looking at the data. These include but are not limited to:

Data gaps: There are some data gaps as organisations might not capture information as per the data fields in this dataset. When looking at the Tableau data gaps are represented as ‘null’ entries. In future deal-level data releases, we will aim to fill in these gaps. Be aware that the ‘nulls’ have been excluded in the initial visualisation and can easily be included by adjusting the filters.

Region: In this release, we have asked for the postcode of the HQ of the entity receiving investment, and used this as a proxy for the location of impact. We use postcode area (first two digits of postcode) to derive region.

Overlap and duplicates: As mentioned above, we are capturing transactions from a social investor into or that benefits a charity or social enterprises, there could be several transactions involved in a deal. There will also be some overlap between some transactions, as the activity of arrangers (such as ClearlySo) are counted separately to the activity of fund investors. Of the c,2,200 transactions listed totalling nearly £1bn of social investment, we are confident that more than 1,500 distinct frontlines have received approximately £1bn of social investment.

Repayment: In this publication we have not captured the transactions that have been repaid but will be doing so in future publications.

Investment date: We have asked fund managers, banks and other intermediaries to provide the contract signing date to capture all investments that are available to charities and social enterprises to access. This is not always the date captured by the fund managers and other intermediaries and therefore the data contains a mix of committee approval dates and contract signing dates.

Value: We have chosen to capture the value of the investment commitment at the point of investment committee approval. In some investments the value drawn down by the charity or social enterprise varies from the initial commitment and we were unable to capture that information.

Outcomes Matrix: A number of our funds, banks and arrangers do not classify the loans they have made according to Big Society Capital’s Outcome Matrix and we have therefore had to match with those categories which may not be a perfect alignment. Where organisations were unable to provide the outcome areas and the names of investees were provided we made our best attempts at identifying the outcome areas.  

Direct investments into intermediaries that would classify themselves as social enterprises are included in this dataset (e.g. our £14.5m commitment to Charity Bank) and therefore is likely to impact the numbers.

Previous publications of deal-level data:

Previous Social Impact metrics: