Finance: Bubb set to take the chair at ACF

Stephen Bubb has been appointed chair of the Adventure Capital Fund, an agency that gives investment support to community-based social enterprises.

The Acevo chief executive was selected through a five-part application process, which began with an advertisement in a national newspaper.

"ACF has got a very good reputation among those who are interested in the issues and know what we do, but what we wanted was a high-profile chair who could raise the ACF profile," said Sue Peters, chief executive of ACF. "To have someone who is well known and well respected within his own organisation is a great help."

She added: "We want to encourage the debate about community organisations building their own assets, either property-based assets or enterprise-based assets. Our aim is to help these organisations become sustainable and solid, so they can carry on doing the work they are doing now."

ACF was set up four years ago as a result of a partnership between the Development Trusts Association, the Scarman Trust, the Local Investment Fund and the New Economics Foundation. So far, the organisation has received more than £15m worth of backing from a range of government departments.

Bubb said that this new post would complement his current role at the chief executives' body. "Through my work with Acevo, it has become clear that, if the third sector is to expand, it must break free from dependence on grants and loans and have access to the capital markets," he said.

Bubb was clear about his ambitions for ACF.

"We need to grow it", he stated. "I believe it is going to be a big player on the scene. Our aim is to increase to £150m within the next five years."

Julia Unwin, interim chair of ACF, said: "Stephen is exactly the right person to ensure that ACF will be effective and robust as it grows in scale without losing the essential spirit of adventure along the way."

Bubb's appointment will be made official at Thursday's board meeting.

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