Thoughts investing directly in Social Enterprises

So my background is growing businesses from scratch. Because we could never accommodate the exclusively-financial motivations of would-be investors (because we had predominantly values-based motivations), it meant that we could not access external capital. We mostly therefore grew the business organically (we had very limited family capital), and continue to.

As a result I have no hair, but I have a very keen understanding of what is required to grow a business, especially with respect to what investment to put in at what stage. We are culturally the opposite of the ‘banker roll-out’ approach – we believe in organic growth, floating an idea in the ocean and positioning it to catch a wave, building on proven success etc. This is partly out of necessity, as we have such a relatively small capital base to work from.

 All this means that we like to back future leaders with great ideas who are interested in a long term journey and are willing to put in the hard yards and have the patience & judgment to resist the impatient ‘instant success’ culture of today – whilst recognizing that the new media world is moving exponentially.

We love to back young people with vision. Our approach is otherwise very simple – strategy/management/governance together underpinning any financial investment, all built on rigorous financial management and total transparency.

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