Supporting Partnerships

Helping organisations come together to fulfil the roles of a social investor.

Twitter ButtonGoogle+ ButtonFacebook Button

To enable greater reach for funds provided by the Growth Fund across the charity and social enterprise sector, Access is encouraging applications from partnerships which combine leading experience with strong sector networks and knowledge, either across particular geographies or industries. For example, a Responsible Finance Provider with extensive SME lending experience but less knowledge of the social sector might apply in partnership with a local infrastructure organisation, like a CVS, bringing excellent knowledge of the local sector, reach into communities, and links to commissioners of public services.

We know that building these partnerships will take time and may need some help in forming. We have therefore created this page for organisations who are interested in playing a role in a partnership application to the Growth Fund to list themselves. To add your details here please email 

You can find out about Street UK, our preferred supplier for a Growth Fund loans administration service, on a separate page here

The small print:

Access has not performed any assessment on the organisations listed here and we do not vouch for the quality of their work. A listing here should not be considered an endorsement, and any application which includes an organisation listed here will be subject to the same due diligence process as all others. The language has been provided by the organisation themselves. We are simply providing an opportunity for organisations to connect and explore potential partnerships. You get the idea…


Organisations interested in playing a role in a partnership application to the Growth Fund:


Northstar Ventures

Northstar Ventures is both a venture capital and social investor committed to supporting high impact social enterprises. With experience of investing in both VCSE organisations and socially driven for-profits, we understand the need for flexibility when it comes to social finance. We currently manage the £10.2m North East Social Investment Fund (NESIF), a unique fund providing impact investments to charities and social enterprises across the North East of England.

Our experience in managing and delivering funds in both the SME equity market and the VCSE social investment market gives us an unrivalled understanding of the risks and mechanics in the operation of such funds. 

We have recently supported Homeless Link in launching the first social investment fund specifically for the homelessness sector, and are happy to discuss partnership opportunities with other organisations who would like support in launching new social investment funds.

Contact: Peter Gilson, Email:, Tel: 0191 229 2770


CAF Venturesome

CAF Venturesome is the social investment arm of the Charities Aid Foundation, and is one of the most established and active players in the UK social investment market. CAF Venturesome aims to support charities and social enterprises to survive and thrive, through the provision of affordable, flexible, repayable finance. Over the past fourteen years, CAF Venturesome has supported more than 500 charities and social enterprises with over £40m of affordable finance. The Venturesome team manages several funds supporting a wide range of social organisations – from local social enterprises and charities to community-led housing groups and major international development charities. Facilities can be used for working capital (cashflow), purchasing assets, growth, transitioning to a new business model and rescue. Tel: 03000 123 300


New Philanthropy Capital
NPC is a charity that provides a range of consulting services for charities and social enterprises, funders and investors. We specialise in providing tools and resources around the measurement of social impact. Our approach to measurement is proportionate and practical—ranging from social impact measurement frameworks through to impact due diligence and impact assurance.

We have a strong track record of supporting social ventures to demonstrate their impact. NPC was a provider on the recent Impact Readiness Fund, working with a number of cohorts, social enterprises and charities. We often work in partnership and welcome interest from SIFIs, investors and social organisations.



FSE Group
The FSE Group “FSE” is a social enterprise (Community Interest Company) and an experienced fund management group.
We have lent over £33m million to 330+ enterprises since 2002 and currently manage ca.£45million of “impact funds” for stakeholder such as Local Enterprise Partnerships, Big Society Capital, Universities and private investors.

FSE has substantial experience of designing and managing loan schemes for early-stage ventures. We are interested in partnering opportunities which can combine our loan management strengths with local client reach and innovation.

Contact : Mark Bickford, Senior Fund Manager, Tel : 01276 607304, Email:


The Key Fund

The Key Fund was established in 1999 and has invested over £39m in over 2,700 VCSE organisations to date. We work across the Northern half of England, providing investments mainly up to £150k, but occasionally as high as £300k to new and emerging social enterprises. However, we specialise in relatively low value investments (at an average of £40k) at high volumes (we completed around 150 deals last year) and can provide a full range of services around investment decision and management activities. We previously helped to establish a blended fund in the South West, providing initial training, credit assessment and repayment services.

Contact: Matt Smith, Deputy CEO, Tel : 0114 242 8900, Email:


Social Investment Business

The Social Investment Business (SIB) is a pioneering social investment specialist. We make money and resources available to charities and social enterprises, providing loans, grants and support to help them increase their impact and become stronger and more sustainable.

We can provide portfolio management services to other SIFIs and partners in the sector looking to set up social investment funds, but lacking the depth of experience and resource to support investments. We manage one the largest social investment portfolios in the UK of over £170 million, and have disbursed more than £390m in loans and grants to over 1,200 charities and social enterprises across the UK since 2002. We offer a broad range of services, which include:

Providing fund management services, including:

  • Structuring and setting up loan funds from idea stage to full implementation, delivery and decision-making.
  • Support for potential investees: e.g. detailed fund guidance, advice and resources and dedicated enquiry line services.
  • Assessment and due diligence of loan proposals.
  • Managing investments: expert services and advice in managing portfolios of charity and social enterprise investments.
  • Post investment support: an experienced team of relationship managers that monitor investee performance and associated risk, including:
    • Advisory support to investees demonstrating warning signs.
    • Intensive services to those encountering problems to get back on track.
    • Advisory support on how to maximise fund recovery when facing closure.

Delivering capacity building interventions to ensure more appropriate finance reaches frontline organisations.

Leading development and implementation of specialist investment readiness funds.

Contact: Chris Dadson, Head of Business Development, Tel: 020 7842 7783, Email: