Resonance Bristol SITR fund unveils impact of first year

Resonance's Bristol Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR) fund is proving popular with social investors and achieving social impact, according to the first social impact report looking at an SITR fund published.

The report looks at the first year’s worth of investments from the social investment finance intermediary (SIFI), which totals £900,000.

The total sum of money raised to date is £2.1m from 70 investors and 11 independent financial advisors and wealth managers. Around half of the investors are from the Bristol area. 

Investors into the fund can claim 30% of their investment back against their annual tax bill.

Resonance has repeatedly posted strong figures in Pioneers Post Quarterly’s Dealflow Derby, which tracks investment from six of the UK’s major SIFIs.

Bristol was chosen both because it has 69,000 people living in areas that are in the 10% most deprived areas of England and because the city also has a strong social enterprise sector supporting communities.

Investments have been made into five social enterprises in Bristol: South Bristol Sports Centre, PAPER Arts, which encourages careers in the arts for young people, regeneration initiative Bearpit, local journal Bristol 24/7 and Chandos House addiction treatment centre.

The title of the social impact report is Dismantling poverty through social enterprise. Three of the organisations (South Bristol Sports Centre, Bearpit and Bristol 24/7) have reported being able to increase social inclusion as investment has increased the resources they have to focus more on marginalised groups.

Resonance uses the Sustainable Livelihoods Approach definition of poverty, which takes a holistic view of poverty not confined to income.

Outcomes that have impacted poverty in the first year include improvements in physical health, increased skills for employment and stronger professional and social networks.

The report describes Resonance’s view that evidence of systemic change to impact poverty will require a more long term view – complete repayments of loans won’t happen until 2022 and the fund is evergreen, so will remain open for further investment for years to come.

Managing director Daniel Brewer commented: "Next year, with twice the number of social enterprises and (hopefully) twice as many investors, we’ll start to see a dent on the inequality that persists in our cities."

Resonance has identified another 50-70 social enterprises as potentially investable in the years to come.