The Cabinet Office has announced a new £10m grant fund which will support ten ‘social incubators’ in providing investment and support to early-stage social ventures.
The Social Incubator Fund will be administered by the Big Lottery Fund and will provide grant funding to social ventures to support or ‘incubate’ early-stage organisations tackling social problems.
The fund will make grant awards to up to ten social investment organisations over three rounds of awards. Grants for the first round will be awarded in January 2013; subsequent rounds will be launched in 2013 and 2014. It is anticipated that three social incubators will be funded through the first round. Organisations can apply for up to £1.5m from the Social Incubator Fund.
It is the second grant fund for social investment organisations announced by the government in as part of what it calls the Investment Readiness Programme.
Last month, the Investment and Contract Readiness Fund opened for business. It is a £10m fund which will help social ventures access social investment of at least £500,000. It is being managed by the Social Investment Business on behalf of government.
Minister for civil society Nick Hurd said:
“We want to help social entrepreneurs to create innovative solutions to difficult social problems. The Social Incubator Fund will significantly increase the number and quality of early stage social ventures in the UK.
“This fund strengthens our commitment to the social investment market by generating a credible pipeline of social investment opportunities for the Investment and Contract Readiness Fund and eventually Big Society Capital.”