Big Society Capital is a financial institution with a social mission, set up in 2012 to build the social investment market in the UK. It gives charities and social enterprises access to repayable finance representing cheaper and more flexible capital to enable them to grow and become more resilient thereby increasing their impact on society.
Big Society Capital has two roles. The first is to act as a champion for the social investment market, increasing awareness, encouraging others to engage in the market, developing research, improving impact measurement and policy advocacy for the sector. The second role is as an investor, providing capital to social investment finance intermediaries, who in turn provide finance and support to charities and social enterprises. The rationale behind investing through intermediaries rather than directly in frontline organisations is that, by supporting the intermediaries to grow and become more sustainable, these organisations will be able to attract more investment to the social sector than Big Society Capital could do alone. Big Society Capital has built a diverse market of finance providers whilst ensuring the existing providers of finance to the sector maintain their focus and sustainability.
BSc was established in 2012 to build the social investment market in the UK.
BST is the majority shareholder of BSC (‘A’ shares – comprising 80% of voting rights). The other shareholders in BSC are four major UK banks: Lloyds, RBS, Barclays and HSBC which have each have an investment of £50 million in BSC (‘B’ shares).
BSC’s total paid-in capital is £580 million with a commitment of a further [£45 million of Dormant Accounts money announced by DCMS in 2018).
BSC has a Board of Directors that includes a representative of the shareholder banks. It is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).