Social entrepreneurship in Philadelphia is exploding. The birthplace of America is becoming host to the founding of dozens of businesses that are setting out to solve long standing social and environmental problems, and GoodCompany Ventures is at the center of it all.
This year, the social impact incubator announced that the Philadelphia chapter of Investors’ Circle (ICP) has committed $500,000 for investment in graduates of the 2013 Ventures program.
Now in its 5th year, the incubator has earned a reputation for its rigor in vetting and cultivating innovative and scalable solutions that address unmet social needs, several of which have received national acclaim. Since its inception in 2009, graduates of the program have raised over $30M through GoodCompany’s resources, however the Seed Fund provides more reliable access to capital for the most effective social entrepreneurs and offers an opportunity for traditional investors to engage in impact investing. Top graduates will now enjoy access to committed capital, in addition to a free 12-week course in business strategy and the office space, mentorship, and access to expertise that the incubator has traditionally offered.
The Investors’ Circle Philadelphia GCV 2013 Seed Fund reflects the long-standing collaboration between ICP and GoodCompany to support social entrepreneurs and a significant private sector response to Mayor Nutter’s leadership in creating the Philadelphia Social Enterprise Partnership.
“Investors Circle Philadelphia has been indispensible as an investment partner for GoodCompany and central to the development of Philadelphia’s reputation for national leadership in supporting social entrepreneurs, “ said Garrett Melby, a founder of the ventures program, “It is a testament to the confidence of ICP’s members in the quality of GCV’s entrepreneurs and the significance of our common goals that they would support the launch of GoodCompany Funding by making such a substantial commitment toward the success of our 2013 Ventures program.”
Not only will the most competitive social entrepreneurs now walk away in September with money in their pockets, they will also be part of a rapidly growing partnership among the City of Philadelphia, Wharton and GoodCompany Ventures that may land them in the national spotlight. Last month, the three organizations – all part of the new Philadelphia Social Enterprise Partnership (PSEP) – were awarded a $1 million prize by Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors’ Challenge, a competition to inspire American cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges.
“Recently we have seen a proliferation of awards promoting social innovation” said Zoe Selzer, GoodCompany’s Executive Director. “GoodCompany applauds Mayor Nutter’s leadership and Mayor Bloomberg’s vision in recognizing the need to invest in the infrastructure required to help social entrepreneurs refine and develop their innovations into the types of enterprises capable of delivering large scale impact.”
Never before has GoodCompany Ventures had so much financial backing and undivided attention of national leaders. If ever there were a time to apply, it is now.
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