Social Stock Exchange will open later this year

It will act as a shop window through which potential investors can view organisations that are seeking social investment

The Social Stock Exchange, a new organisation that will publish details of social ventures seeking investment, will open later this year, according to a spokeswoman for the exchange.

The exchange will not act as a trading platform where investments can be bought and sold, but as a ‘shop window’ through which a social investor can view a number of companies and charities in one place.

It is expected to open with about 20 organisations listed, each of which will have completed a ‘social impact report’ – these cost about £8,000 and carry information about their social benefit.

To become a member of the exchange, an organisation must already be offering a social investment that is listed elsewhere.

The exchange will carry information about both for-profit businesses with social purposes and charities that offer investment products such as bonds. It will not feature specialist charity investment products such as ‘quasi-equity’ and social impact bonds.

The Big Lottery Fund has announced today that it will support the first organisations that complete a social impact report through a new £300,000 Kick-Starter fund.

The panel that decides which organisations will receive this funding has not been finalised, but is likely to include the BLF, the SSE and social investment specialist Can, which will assist in the production of the reports.

Nat Sloane, England chair of the Big Lottery Fund, said the process would "not only lead to an increase in investment in social businesses and charities, but will also support them to demonstrate their social impact more fully".

He said the BLF was putting in place a package of measures, including some that were still in development, designed to "develop the social investment market in a way that supports charities and other social sector organisations to better serve those most in need".

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