It is a movement for advocacy, promoting financial sectoral change to key actors.
They also work to effect ‘change from within’, campaigning for the re-alignment of finance professions to a more equitable and fair model.
The Lab web site has an inciteful article, written by Angela Clements, founder of Fair For You. It shows the journey that a finance sector principal can be driven to follow, when the inequity of access to mainstream credit, for example, makes even more difficult the life of an economically disenfranchised family.
Key Fund, one of the North’s longest-standing investors in the community/social enterprise sector, has announced a new CEO. Matt Smith, previously Deputy CEO, with over 13 years’ experience with the organisation now takes over the helm.
Hugh Rolo, Chair of the Key Fund Board, said: “We are extremely pleased Matt has taken on the CEO role. Not only is he committed and passionate about the organisation, he has a long track-record at the Fund. He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge, as well as the vision and drive to take Key Fund forward.”
Key Fund has supported community/social enterprises for over 16 years, helping thousands of new start-ups and existing businesses to expand and grow. The first half of 2015-2016 saw unprecedented business, with more investment than in the whole of the previous year, itself a record breaker.
Hugh Rolo said: “Matt’s role ushers in a new era for Key Fund. We have taken stock of our position and reshaped the business model going forward. Key Fund has always evolved to work with the challenges of the social enterprise sector, and we’re looking forward to this new chapter in our 16-year legacy.”
“I’d like to thank the outgoing CEO, Sam Tarff, an innovative, entrepreneurial and growth-orientated CEO, who has now decided the time is right to move on.”
Key Fund completed a staffing restructure in January. Its investment team will continue to be led by Garry Brown, who joined the Key Fund in 2009 after many years’ experience in the banking sector.
Hugh Rolo continues as Chair.
Matt said: “I’m looking forward to working with the management team and Board on our refreshed strategy for Key Fund, building on our long track record and experience of bringing the right kind of money to community and social enterprise across the North.”
Key Fund continues its investments via a range of funders, including: the Regional Growth Fund, European Investment Fund and Social Incubator contracts. Key Fund has benefitted from investment from Big Society Capital and continues discussions with a number of other Investors.
Now entering its second year, the awards highlight the innovation and dedication of world leading social investors and enterprises, celebrating both the achievements of teams and individuals alike.
The awards are supported by NatWest. In 1999 the bank set up its own charity, Social & Community Capital, to help fund social enterprises and community lenders that cannot access mainstream finance and to help them on their path to the financial mainstream.
The awards have six categories that applicants can enter, free of charge, by nominating their own businesses or social enterprises.
Institutional Social Investment Award Institutional investment deal or product that has created demonstrable social impact at scale. New Social Investors Award Investment deal or product that has attracted new savers and investors into the social investment market. Social Entrepreneurs Investment Award Investment deal into an early stage social organisation to create demonstrable social impact. International Social Investment Award International investor who has invested through the UK market to create social impact anywhere in the world. Market Building Award Organisation that has demonstrated innovative and diverse ways to grow the social investment market in the UK. Public Service Transformation Award Social investment deal that has delivered improved public services.
Categories 1-3 and 5-6 are open to nominations from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Category 4 is open to individuals or organisations based anywhere in the world.
The awards close to applications on 18 March 2016. Short-listed nominees will be notified on 1 April 2016 and the awards ceremony will be held in London on 3 May 2016.
The Key Fundhave a range of on-line resources available for the budding social entrepreneur, or social enterprise that is leaning towards developing its business in 2016.
You can find some simple and effective Key Fund toolkits below. Whether needing to survey and assess your income needs as an individual, or a family unit, or to calculate various loan interests.
You can also find a template for creating your Social Enterprise Business Plan. This will guide you methodically and clearly through the steps you need to plan your governance, your policies and your operational delivery – all focused on social enterprise creation and sustainability.
The Key Fund main web pages also have a more comprehensive and detailed set of resources available on the Fund Start-up Advice web centre (Courtesy of Start-up Donut). This offers you more insight and detailed resources for creating a new social business and has links to a variety of services and information that new groups or companies will find useful.
Your concept must be to create a physical product and you need to be UK based to qualify for entry. Up to 150,000 Pounds prize money is to be shared by the winning entries, as well as a period of development and design support to realise your dream.
Sheffield Social Enterprise Network (SSEN) is to commission business development expertise to sustain and develop the network beyond the end of the Lottery grant which expires on 31 March 2016.
‘SSEN requires a consultant to help the network become a sustainable entity beyond the end of the current Awards for All grant which ends on 31.03.2016. This piece of work is fundamental to develop SSEN’s strategy for the medium and long-term’. Source: SSEN Nov. 2015.
The main areas of work include:
Work with SSEN management committee and its members to understand its circumstances, problems and opportunities.
Develop a tender/funding resource (key information that SSEN can use to input directly into funding/tender bids).
Scope the external environment for business opportunities
Register SSEN with key contract opportunity websites, mailing lists and newsletters.
Identify and evaluate potential income-generating services and projects that SSEN could develop (short term and long term).
Write funding and tender bids with the support of management committee members.
The deadline for receipt of tenders is 12pm on Tuesday 10 November2015.
An exciting two day event, bringing together digital academics, female entrepreneurs and women who are working or interested in creative industries and digital enterprise.
Saturday 21 & Sunday 22 November 2015 at the University of Nottingham – Book on-line here.
‘What is Missing in Action about?
A collaboration between the Haydn Green Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Digital Women UK, this ‘thought space’ will allow female digital entrepreneurs, academics, creative practitioners and those interested in this field, to discuss professional challenges and concerns, share insights and learn from each other’s experiences and studies of digital entrepreneurship.
Why the title?
Missing in Action reflects the fact that although female digital entrepreneurs are aspiring to start up status, or are working widely in the UK, very little is known about who they are, which communities they come from, the obstacles they face and which entrepreneurial activities they are engaged or interested in.
Women of Colour are driving entrepreneurial growth overseas.
For example, statistics show that women of colour in the US are driving growth in entrepreneurial activity, much of which is underpinned by the digital environment. Yet there is no equivalent or robust information about women’s experiences in the UK.
We believe that increasing the visibility and knowledge-base around UK women working in digital will enable us to develop and champion more targeted professional support and help aspirant women decide if this is a path they want to pursue. This event is one step towards helping to fill the information vacuum’.
£32k prize fund shared by top performing social businesses…
The NatWest SE100 Index has announced the winners of its 2015 awards. Five winners were chosen from 1120 social ventures listed on the NatWest SE100 Index in the UK. This year’s awards build a clear picture of a thriving social enterprise sector that is supporting economic growth in the UK and delivering positive social impact.
The 2015 winners demonstrate best business practice within the social sector, working to address some of the UK’s most acute social issues. This year’s winners are helping to get people from disadvantaged backgrounds back into work, sustaining the environment and revolutionising healthcare services for disabled children.
These inspiring organisations now share over £32,000 in prize money awarded today at Critical Mass, the event for social enterprise, in recognition of their work.
The EBP is a non-profit dedicated to developing the skills of young people through development and employment programmes. The EBP works to ensure its services provide young people with the opportunity to develop the skills that employers are looking for, striving to engage young people in work and society.
FRC Group runs three social businesses including furniture recycling and waste management projects. These produce financial profits and create a social dividend by giving people in poverty and unemployment the opportunity to change their lives.
Kelvin Valley Honey works to sustain Scotland’s honey bee populations whilst contributing to the regeneration of disadvantaged communities through financing and supporting the development of beekeeping, creating employment for people housebound through disability and long term illnesses.
Andiamo works to meet the gap in demand and capacity that currently exists and is growing in the field of orthotics, printing 3D fully customised orthotics children with disabilities and long-term conditions.
Five Lamps delivers an integrated range of inclusion services to transform the lives of individuals and their families from disadvantaged communities, by helping them to find work, start their own business, improve their finances and improve their aspirations.
Aduna is an African-inspired health & beauty brand and social business working to create demand for under-utilised natural products from small-scale producers in Africa to create sustainable income – starting with the nutrient-dense superfoods Baobab and Moringa.
Marcelino Castrillo, Managing Director Business Banking, NatWest, who presented the Growth Champion Award, said: “I want to congratulate all this year’s winners, not just on their success in the awards, but on the profound social impact that they are having on our society. NatWest is proud to have supported the SE100 since the beginning and we are committed to unlocking and nurturing entrepreneurial talent through access to finance, markets and expertise.”
Rob Wilson, Minister for Civil Society who presented the Trailblazing Newcomer award said of the NatWest SE100: “Social enterprises occupy a crucial place in our society. These organisations help tackle social challenges while contributing to economic growth. The SE100 Index is an important benchmark for the sector and I would encourage all social enterprises to sign up so we can build a truly compassionate society.”
(If ever there was a great example of how diverse, dynamic and effective the social (enterprise) sector is in the UK, then look no further than these awards…Ed.)
This Saturday, 10th October 2015, is Social Saturday– spend your cash with a social enterprise and get some real ‘community multiplier effect‘ for your money!
‘In the UK alone, there are 70,000 social enterprises, contributing £18.5 billion to the UK economy and employing almost a million people. This exciting movement is growing fast all around the world and we’re seeing a boom in start-ups being launched that combine doing business with doing good’. Source: Social Enterprise UK
At the Key Fund, research that shows that this confusion persists about what social enterprise is. Although two thirds of us support the idea of social enterprise, only a fifth (21 per cent) knew what social enterprises were.
‘Simply, it’s about buying or using services from businesses that make a positive difference in our community or on the environment. Social enterprises reinvest their profits into furthering their social mission. They have to have good business models to be financially sustainable, so they don’t rely on grants or charity’. Source: The Key Fund
Key Fund is itself a social enterprise. Matt Smith of the Key Fund, quoted in a recent article in The Guardian, speaking about the misconceptions about Social Enterprise in the UK stated ‘…what’s interesting is this misconception that social enterprise relies on grants or donations. We escaped a culture reliant on grants many years ago, and the main impetus of social enterprise is to ignite local economies, create jobs, and be profitable or at least sustainable in delivering their ethical aim.”