City Funds has announced the completion of its first investment funding round, securing over £10 million to address the causes and effects of inequality in Bristol.
One of the first funds of its kind in the UK, the impact fund brings together investment, grant and local authority support in a coordinated place-based approach to tackling inequality. With different types of funding under one roof, City Funds will strengthen Bristol-based initiatives that are working to solve some of the biggest social and environmental problems the city faces.
Through its investment advisor, Bristol & Bath Regional Capital (BBRC), City Funds is already actively seeking opportunities to invest in organisations that support these aims. The Society of Merchant Venturers helped to found BBRC in 2015 and remains actively involved in its growth and development.
City Funds will support impact-driven organisations in Bristol, investing from £50,000 to £1 million with flexible terms that support social or environmental aims. In addition, development funding will be available, where repayment will be linked to success milestones such as achieving planning permission. Both types of finance may be eligible for grant funding as part of a blended approach in partnership with charitable trust Power to Change.
Ed Rowberry, Chief Executive for BBRC and City Funds board member said: “Bristol is known for home-grown solutions to local challenges. City Funds maintains that approach and is designed to amplify it, making finance work for the local projects and businesses with the ambition to have a positive effect in our communities.”
The fund aims to support:
• Economic Inclusion: funding initiatives that promote full participation and ownership in a diverse and local economy.
• Environmental Transformation: funding the transition to a carbon neutral, zero-waste city, that promotes the health of the natural environment.
• Community Initiatives: funding community initiatives to help them play an impactful role in Bristol and develop community resilience.
• No Child Goes Hungry: funding initiatives that help communities grow, purchase, prepare and cook fresh, healthy and affordable food.
As an example of Bristol’s One City Approach, City Funds is a strategic partnership between BBRC, Quartet Community Foundation and Bristol City Council.
Initiatives seeking funding can find out more at www.bristolcityfunds.co.uk