Last month saw an important milestone for Big Society Capital: the first investment redemption from our portfolio. Scope, the disability charity, repaid the £875,000 investment we made via Investing for Good, the social finance intermediary who arranged and underwrote the transaction.
As the first Big Society Capital investment to be repaid, it is encouraging to see this example of how social investment can work successfully as a tool to raise additional finance for charities and social enterprises.
Scope launched the £2m bond in 2012 to generate new sources of income and expand their fundraising programmes, helping them open 20 new shops which funded additional support services such as the Face 2 Face programme, a peer support scheme for parents of disabled children across the UK.
The Charity Bond market has grown substantially over the last few years with over £78m raised by charities through listed and unlisted bonds. Big Society Capital has made the following investments to support the market:
- £875,000 investment to enable the underwriting of the Scope 3-year issue
- £1,366,000 investment into Greenwich Leisure Limited’s 5-year issue
- £10,000,000 investment into the Threadneedle UK Social Bond Fund which has subsequently invested into the likes of Golden Lane Housing
- £10,000,000 investment to create the Charity Bond Support Fund to support new Charity Bond issues in the primary market
The redemption from the Scope bond is leading the way and we expect to see more redeem in future, building an evidence base of investments that generate both a social impact and a financial return.