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Funding of Social Enterprises: A case study of high investor engagement funding practices on for-profit social enterprises
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business Studies.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This bachelor thesis evaluates how high-engagement investors contribute to the development and growth of for-profit social enterprises by providing both funding and non-financial advisory services focused on organisational capacity-building. Case studies on three social enterprises describe the structure of funding deals, what considerations affected these due to the high social character of the ventures, and inquire into the relationship between social enterprise and their investors to evaluate how the investors provide value for their investees beyond capital. The investor types involved include commercial venture capital funds, angel investors, accelerator programs and venture philanthropy funds; a sort of social impact investment fund which combines the high- engagement mentoring of venture capital funds with lower expectations on financial returns in exchange for higher demands on social impact.

The findings indicate that high-engagement investors in general provide a wide range of services to the social enterprises studied, where strategic advisory services and networks introductions are identified as key enablers for development. Aligning philosophies on the combination of business and social impact is also identified as critical for a constructive relationship between investor and investee. The perceived value of venture philanthropy funding diverges between the cases; while filling an empty space in the social enterprise capital market, some findings question their capabilities and investment model. Apart from the initial research questions on how high-engagement investors add value to social enterprises, the study raises further questions on social enterprise funding in general and the issues that obstructs these organisations from introducing innovation and growth to underdeveloped markets.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 45 p.
Keyword [en]
Social Enterprise Funding, Social Enterprise, Social Entrepreneurship, Social Entrepreneurs, Bottom-of-the-pyramid, BoP, Venture Philanthropy, Impact Investing, Venture Capital, Angel Investors, Accelerators
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-297872OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-297872DiVA: diva2:943919
Educational program
Bachelor Programme in Business Studies
Available from: 2016-08-26 Created: 2016-06-28 Last updated: 2016-08-26Bibliographically approved

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