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Business models

Business models are the ways that organisations generate social impact (impact model) and revenues (revenue model). These models are the vital link between the different investment products we help develop and the positive impact that enterprises and charities make for people and communities.

Understanding the range of business models that are suitable for repayable finance is important to us. It means we can develop the appropriate investment products to support social enterprises, charities, and social purpose organisations, while delivering on the risk, return and impact preferences of different investor groups. We share relevant insights with our fund managers to inform their investment decisions and active portfolio management. But it is the fund managers, social banks and intermediaries who build in-depth knowledge and expertise in specific business models, relevant to their areas of work, through engaging with, and investing in, enterprises.

The following table includes a selection of important business models (though not exhaustive) in our portfolio, organised by outcome area.
Arts, Heritage, Sports and Faith Citizenship and Community Conservation of the Natural Environment
Art and heritage (D, CB, SB) Community renewable energy (R) Local conservation organisations (D,SB)
Affordable sports and gyms (D,CB) Community shops and pubs (D) Energy efficiency services (D,E)
Community Facilities (D, SB)
Employment, education and training Family, friends and relationships Housing and local facilities
Employment social enterprises (D, E) Children's therapeutic support (OC) Affordable housing (P, CB, SB)
SMEs in deprived areas (D) Youth support (OC) Transitional accommodation for the formerly homeless (P, D, SB)
Early years education (D) Homelessness support services (OC)
Income and financial inclusion Mental health and wellbeing Physical health
Community lenders (D) Online mental health support (E) Domiciliary care (D, E)
Salary finance (E) Local neurological support (D, SB) Online health (E)
Online rent to own (D, E) Social prescribing (OC)

CB = Charity bonds D = Debt funds E = Equity and Venture OC = Outcomes contracts P = Property R = Renewables SB = Social banks

We know repayable finance is not right for every enterprise business model, but we’ve learnt that – in the right place – it can transform the scale and quality of impact.