venerdì 16 gennaio 2015

FC United goes to Downing Street to highlight social investment

(SOURCE: FC United took its community involvement message to the heart of Westminster last night when general manager Andy Walsh addressed a Downing Street reception on 15 January 2015 on the benefits of social investment.

The event, organised by the Cabinet Office for ‘social angel’ investors, was attended by over 150 people. FC United’s Andy Walsh spoke alongside Cabinet Minister Francis Maude, Martin Lewis, founder and chief executive of and Deborah Meaden, one of the investors from the BBC’s Dragon’s Den programme. FC United were invited to address the high-profile gathering following the club’s success in raising funds for their new ground from a pioneering community shares scheme and being one of the first organisations to raise funds using the government’s new social investment tax relief (SITR) regulations.

Speaking following the event, FC United general manager Andy Walsh said: “The invitation to Downing Street is recognition of the club’s success in being a pioneer in the field of social finance and community fundraising. We have raised almost £2m from community shares, £275,000 from a pioneering loan stock scheme and £51,000 from a Crowdfunder campaign – all significant achievements and we are keen to spread the message of community and supporter involvement more widely.

“Our success has been based on creating social impact backed by a solid business plan. Social investment is not just about a financial return it’s also about empowering local communities through strengthening involvement in the things that are important in people’s lives. Our funders will get something back for their investment but the key element that differentiates social finance from other funding opportunities is the social impact. That’s the message I was keen to get across at Downing Street to the politicians, investors and members of the financial community present at the event.

“‘Social angels’ are business people with a social conscience who may be willing to invest significant sums in social enterprises. Large investments are important, as are the insights and the expertise they can bring. Just as important is the individual involvement of the many hundreds of ordinary people we have reached out to. In FC United’s case social finance has been about ordinary people from all walks of life coming together to achieve extraordinary things.”

The FC United community share scheme is still open for existing shareholders to top up their purchase or for new buyers to come on board. Find out more here.


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