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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Record year for social lending firm

This news post is over 1 year old

Activity benefited 4.3m people

Active loans and investments at responsible finance provider Social Investment Scotland (SIS) reached more than £41 million across 201 social enterprises over the past year (2022/2021) according to its latest Impact Report.

The latest annual investment figures from SIS show that active loans and investments during 2022/21 increased by £3 million from £38 million in 2021/2020, a record amount for SIS during its 21-year history.

The record investment figures were achieved during the second year of its 10 year Building an Impact Economy Strategy, supporting and encouraging businesses of all kinds to make a real, measurable, and sustainable impact on people’s lives.

Lending volumes include £12.4 million in loan and equity funds drawn by social enterprises in Scotland, and £6.8 million loaned to responsible lenders across the UK who, in turn, offer finance to enterprises and individuals who are unable to secure them from mainstream financial lenders. £1.8M in equity funding was drawn by impact-led businesses through impact investor SIS Ventures.

SIS also approved £9.15 million new investments for Scotland’s social enterprises during the year.

The activities of SIS, either directly or indirectly, benefited 4.3 million people, more than double last year’s total of 1.9 million people, with those benefits felt by communities in all 32 local authorities in Scotland.

One third (33%) of loan customers secured loans of under £50,000 underlining SIS’s support for smaller social enterprises, charities and community organisations.

As well as providing funding to help support the growth of an impact economy, SIS's market building activity provided projects, programmes, and support to help communities and social enterprises develop capacity, confidence and resilience. Activity included the delivery of 74 workshops and webinars, and the design and management of 11 support initiatives.

Investment Scotland’s chairman, Ken Barclay, said: “Over the last 21 years, SIS has grown to a position where our customers, and those we work with, touch the lives of at least 4.3 million people each year. It is this social impact which inspires and drives our team to achieve great outcomes with both our long term and new partners in ways that make a real difference to the lives of the people our customers serve.

“We thank all of our partners for their commitment and support, alongside our customers and peer organisations. We will continue to work to build the kind of world where positive impact for people and the planet comes first.”