Investment means Breadshare can roll out its bakery to other areas
A community bakery in Edinburgh has landed investment to franchise its model across Scotland.
Portobello-based Breadshare, set up by husband and wife team Debra Riddell and Geoff Crowe, secured the investment after guidance from social enterprise agency Firstport.
Breadshare provides organic bread and offers a variety of activities to enhance community life in Edinburgh Geoff, is one of 14 businesses on LaunchMe, Scotland’s first accelerator for early stage social enterprises designed to grow the social investment market.
Firstport identifies ambitious, early stage enterprises in Scotland, provides one-to-one business support and connects them with investors looking for social as well as financial returns.
The participants can also apply for matched non-repayable grant funds from Big Lottery Scotland, as well as initial seed funding.
We are delighted that traditional investors are more aware and getting involved in social enterprise - Karen McGregor
In this case the investment was made by former SSE chief executive Ian Marchant – his first in social enterprise.
He said: “I have developed my own theory about investment which applies to both time and money. It draws on the triple bottom line theory which is usually applied to companies and governments but can, I believe, be adapted for personal use too.
“For me, an investment social enterprise hits all those three: a modest economic return for an impact on an organisation and an issue facing society in a market or place that interests me. What's not to like?"
Karen McGregor, chief executive of Firstport, says: “We are delighted that traditional investors are more aware and getting involved in social enterprise – it’s a significant development for our sector and we hope more investors like Mr Marchant turn their attention to and recognise the exciting potential of social enterprise”.