About the Fund

The £10m Investment and Contract Readiness Fund enables social ventures to access new forms of investment and compete for public service contracts.

Grants between £50,000 and £150,000 will be available on a rolling basis to ambitious social ventures who will go on to raise at least £500,000 investment, or who want to bid for contracts over £1 million.

The development of the social sector has been held back because many charities and social enterprises lack the skills or experience to successfully raise investment or compete for public sector contracts. Many have also been unable or unwilling to pay for specialist support and there has been a limited market of organisations offering these services.

The BCG report, Ready, Willing and Able, An interim review of the Investment and Contract Readiness Fund found that the ICRF had already had a “significant and positive impact” against these obstacles:

  • The nearly £35 million of investment raised and contracts won with support of the ICRF was “impressive” and in line with expectations;
  • Ventures reported significant increases in their skills and knowledge and 70% thought they would need less help in the future;
  • The ICRF had grown the market in providing business support services to charities and social enterprises, and ventures were starting to become more willing to pay for them as they became aware of the benefits they could bring.

The fund is currently not accepting applications for grants and further updates will be provided in the coming months.

If you would like to discuss any aspect of our services please contact us at info@advantage-ba.com or call 0121 212 6580.

The Fund enables social ventures to secure social investment and helps increase the number of social ventures who are able to compete for and win public service contracts. Social ventures that tackle social problems, are financially sustainable and, want to scale up are welcome to apply. This Fund is not just restricted to those organisations with non-profit legal forms and we welcome applications from profit distributing entities who deliver social impact. Only social ventures based in England are eligible to apply.

Bill Fryer – Director at Advantage Business Agency
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