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In brief: Social impact measurement platform raises £8.5m

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Published: 28 April 2023

Social Value Portal completes funding round | EVPA and Impact Hau launch catalytic capital project | Circa5000 announces impact-focused ETF range

Social Value Portal provides online tools to measure, manage and report financial and non-financial data and helps identify social impact opportunities | NicoElNino on iStock

Social Value Portal (SVP), a UK-based online platform for measuring and monitoring social impact, has raised £8.5m (€9.6m) in a funding round led by venture capital investors Mercia. Existing VC investors Beringea also participated in the round. 

SVP, which was founded in 2014, allows organisations to measure and manage the contribution that their organisation and supply chain makes to society. The company provides online tools to measure, manage and report both financial and non-financial data and also helps organisations identify social impact opportunities for investment.   

SVP said it would use the investment to “tap into growing demand from the public and private sectors”. It also plans to launch a Social Value Academy, whose aim will be to help educate business leaders and embed social value into business decision-making and delivery. 

The company’s clients include UK public sector bodies such as the NHS, the UK’s national healthcare provider, and the Met Office, the national weather service, as well as global companies such as Accenture, Vodafone and Fujitsu. SVP’s platform is also used by over 100 public sector buyers across the country. 

Since 2012, the Social Value Act has required UK public sector bodies to evaluate ‘economic, social and environmental well-being’ as part of public tendering processes, and social value can account for up to 30 per cent of the total weighting when awarding tenders.  

Guy Battle, founder and CEO of Social Value Portal, said: “This investment will allow us to continue to improve and innovate, making it easier for members to provide more social good.” 

EVPA launches catalytic capital case study initiative with Impact Hau

EVPA and Impact Hau, an impact investment research project at the University of Bologna in Italy, have launched a research initiative to develop case studies that provide examples of catalytic capital. 

This spring, Impact Hau, which is funded by the European Research Council, and the EVPA will conduct a series of interviews with a select group of practitioners who deploy catalytic capital to achieve impact at scale. The EVPA said the aim was to collect real-life cases and best practices of how catalytic capital can fuel impactful solutions, to better understand the challenges  practitioners face, their main lessons learned and to provide useful tools for other practitioners interested in catalytic investing. 

The EVPA said that the Catalytic Capital in Action project was part of an ongoing effort to build synergies with the academic world and draw attention to new voices in the area of impact investing.  

Themes covered by the case studies will include impact measurement and management, risk frameworks, beneficiary impact, and the relationship between grant and non-grant finance.  

Impact Hau is self-described as a comparative anthropological study of impact investing and sustainable finance, inspired by the sociologist Marcel Mauss’s use of the Maori concept of hau, the ‘spirit of the gift’. The joint project is currently accepting case studies for consideration. 

Circa5000 to launch impact-focused ETF range 

Circa5000, a London-based impact investor, has announced it will launch five UCITS ETFs, which it says will be the first impact-focused ETFs to be launched in Europe. 

The company said that the fund range will offer investors full portfolio coverage of the investible UN SDGs with minimal overlap. Each of the ETFs, which are expected to list this summer having received regulatory approval, will focus on a different impact theme: energy and technology; sustainable food and biodiversity; clean water and waste; social and economic empowerment; and health and wellbeing.

Circa 5000, which operates via a direct-to-consumer platform offering a range of investment and savings accounts, including its own pension, will conduct the thematic screening and impact analysis for its ETF portfolio in partnership with impact rating agency Impak Analytics and index and portfolio software developers BITA. 

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