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How to Get Your Social Enterprise Investment Ready

There are over 20,000 social enterprises in Australia, and they exist in every industry, from garden maintenance to consultancy firms to carpentry. These purpose-driven organisations are united by a desire to do good for the communities they serve, and this objective is drastically changing the nature of business. 

But how many of these social enterprises are scalable? How many of these businesses, if they had the investment, could drastically increase the positive impact they have?

Impact investment can be scary to think about. Not only are you committed to providing a financial return to stakeholders, but a positive impact too. In this article, we’ll share some of the important questions you need to ask yourself to determine whether your purpose-driven organisation is ready for investment. 

The important questions:

If you’re thinking about impact investment, sit down with your core team and be honest with yourselves. Answers to these questions will help illuminate whether you are ready and, if not, what you need to work on in order to get there.

Some of the questions you need to ask yourself about your business are:

Do I have systems in place to quantitatively measure my social or environmental impact? Testimonies are great, but how are we crunching the numbers?

Do I have a proven revenue model? Is there demand? How can I prove it?

Is my revenue model sustainable and capable of handling growth? What if 500 orders came in overnight? What if 2000 leads came through after a viral campaign?

Is our team strong, and is our second line of management capable?

Some of the questions you need to ask yourself about investment are:

What do I need capital for? Am I looking to grow my business, or sustain it?

What type of capital is most suitable? Do I have the time to find grants? Do I have the capacity to pay back loans in pre-determined timelines?

Who are the right people to fund this? What type of investor am I looking for? What are the pros and cons of different investors?

These are BIG questions and only just the tip of the iceberg. Ironing out the creases can be difficult if you don’t know what you’re doing. 

Do you need more support? 

If you’d like to receive support as you consider these questions and the impact investment landscape, impact investment specialists Social Impact Hub have two events coming up in Sydney and Perth as part of their Scaling Impact Roadshow:

Melbourne – March 3 – Scaling Impact: The Impact Investment Readiness Journey
Brisbane – March 18 – Scaling Impact: The Impact Investment Readiness Journey

If you’re not in either of these locations, they’ll be launching an impact investment accelerator in 2020! We’re so excited about this, and we promise you will be too. If you want them to shoot you an email the moment it’s live, pop in your details here.

Jay Boolkin
Jay Boolkin

I'm passionate about positive social change and the power of social entrepreneurship to tackle some of the world’s biggest problems. I believe that for-purpose business models can become part of the mainstream and I am enthusiastic about advocating for business models that are genuinely built around a social or environmental mission.

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