“A BUSINESS THAT MAKES NOTHING BUT
MONEY IS A POOR BUSINESS.” — Henry Ford
In response to an email I received asking about sources of social venture capital, I published this list of 15 social investment firms. Based on tweets and suggestions I got from people like you who are using business to meet social or environmental needs, I’ve put together a list of 10 more firms that make socially driven investments. Know of others that should be listed? Great! Post them in the comments or email them to me, olivia[at]causecapitalism.com.
- CEI Ventures*: Focus on companies showing potential for rapid growth. Portfolio company investments range from $250,000 to $1 million.
- Echoing Green: A bit different–it’s a two-year fellowship program that provides technical support, guidance and up to $90,000 to each fellow.
- GoodCompany Ventures: Incubation and funding for entrepreneurs meeting social needs. Companies must demonstrate financial return and social impact. Also taking applications for its summer Incubator Program for social entrepreneurs.
- Gray Matters Capital: Risk capital, seed and early stage equity investments from $250,000 to $2 million. GMC works with its portfolio entrepreneur to identify metrics that guide the business and convey the social impact that the enterprise seeks to achieve.
- Ignia Fund: Focus on founding and expansion of high-growth social enterprises serving the base of the socio-economic pyramid in Latin America.
- New Cycle Capital: Early-stage funding for capital-efficient businesses addressing the social needs of emerging markets.
- Pacific Community Ventures, LLC*: Capital and resources for California businesses that deliver high financial returns and lasting high-quality jobs.
- Presumed Abundance*: Angel fund for social entrepreneurs with a twist. The equity Presumed Abundance buys goes directly into its angel fund. If your company has a merger/acquisition or IPO, the purchased equity becomes available as seed stage capital for new social enterprises. You’re now an angel partner with a say in determining where to invest the funds. Investments range from $10,000 to $25,000.
- renewal2: Expansion funding focused on organic and natural food, green consumer products, green building and social media.
- Sustainable Jobs Fund*: Venture capital partnership providing expansion funding ($1M to $10M). Investment areas include cleanteach, recycling, organic and healthy consumer products, renewable energy and digital media.
- BONUS Mission Markets: I just interviewed Mission Markets founder Mike Van Patten about the online exchange he’s building for social and environmental capital markets. When the platform launches at the end of April 2010, entrepreneurs will be able to submit applications for funding from Mission Markets’ community of investors. I’ll post a link to the finished interview here.
- Omidyar Network: Invests in high-growth entrepreneurs that provide low-cost products and services to underserved populations and help spur economic activity.
- Next Street: Focus on inner-city businesses, providing financial and intellectual capital.
- Pipeline Fund: A new fund investing in women-led social enterprises.
*Shaula Massena suggested these four firms as additional resources for social venture funding. Shaula writes about socially responsible investment, microfinance and philanthropy at ShaulaBlog.