Social Investment Scotland celebrates 15 years in business

Over the last 15 years, the third sector lender has invested more than £53 million in 250 organisations, supporting local job creation, community engagement and economic development in almost every city, town and region in Scotland

Social Investment Scotland (SIS) – Scotland’s leading lender to the third sector – is celebrating 15 successful years in business.
The Edinburgh-based charity and social enterprise, which provides loans to other third sector organisations, has chosen to mark the milestone by appointing six new patrons.
Its new patrons have been appointed in recognition of their ongoing support for SIS.
They are Lady Susan Rice CBE, who SIS says was instrumental in its set up; former Scottish Executive Minister Wendy Alexander; previous chairs Ray Perman and Alf Young, and former trustees Sarah Smart and Kenneth Ferguson.
Since its inception in 2001, SIS says it has strived to connect more capital with more communities across Scotland by investing in charities and social enterprises to help them increase their positive impacts on society.
It has invested more than £53 million in 250 organisations, supporting local job creation, community engagement and economic development in almost every city, town and region in Scotland.
has marked its 15th Anniversary at a celebration dinner, attended by Deputy First Minister John Swinney MSP.
To mark its progress, SIS held a celebration dinner at Edinburgh’s new Home restaurant, a new social enterprise from the team at Social Bite – one of Scotland’s best-known social enterprise success stories, support by investment from the third sector lender.
SIS chair Nick Kuenssberg said: “As one of the first examples of social finance in the UK, SIS has consistently shown that social investment can increase financial sustainability, delivering longer lasting social impacts which ultimately help to improve the lives of more people.
“Over the last 15 years, SIS has invested more than £53 million in organisations across the country firmly establishing itself as Scotland’s, and the UK’s, leading responsible finance provider. I’m proud that our focus on supporting the most marginalised communities has been unwavering and I’m very grateful to all of those who have supported SIS since its creation.
“I’d particularly like to thank our patrons for their ongoing support in helping to grow and develop SIS by raising awareness about the impact of our work. Looking ahead, we have a real chance of expanding the social investment marketplace with the right strategy in place to help us deliver that ambition.”
Deputy First Minister John Swinney, who joined SIS for a celebratory meal, said: “Social Investment Scotland has played an important role supporting our expanding social enterprise sector, providing more than £53 million investment so far to some 250 organisations throughout the country. Therefore I am pleased to congratulate SIS and their investor partners on a successful 15 years.
“As a Government, we are fully committed to supporting social enterprises to flourish, as underlined by our national Social Enterprise Strategy, to be published later this year. I greatly value our positive partnership with SIS, who I am sure will be critical to helping the Scottish Government deliver our ambitions for the social enterprise sector in the years to come.”
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Hannah Hamilton, who is a former Fife College student, is a reporter and assistant content editor for Scotland B2B, specialising in B2B news and features. She can be contacted via