Power Up Scotland Programme

“A lot of fantastic early-stage social ventures across Scotland struggle to access small to medium-sized loans, so we are so pleased that through this partnership we can support those organisations to make an even greater difference within their communities.” John Montague, Managing Director of Group Operations

Our newly launched Power Up Scotland Programme develops early stage social businesses through investment, business support and cross-sector partnerships.

Power Up is open to organisations across Scotland and has made £750,000 available to lend over the next two years. The funding available is to enable organisations to build on the good work they currently do within their communities. Whether it’s buying equipment, hiring new talent, or progressing with business development plans. Successful applicants will also receive mentoring and business development support to social ventures for the two year period.

The programme, pioneered by Big Issue Invest and funded by partners, Aberdeen Standard Investments, Edinburgh University and the Scottish Government, is aimed at enabling up to 20 Scottish early-stage social ventures to access loan funding of up to £50k over the next two years. Power Up has been developed for organisations likely to be accessing finance for the first time, and with social value creation being the key criterion, social enterprises, charities, and private enterprises are all welcome to apply.

The scheme builds on Big Issue Invest’s significant expertise in social venture investment, which since its launch in 2005 has seen the organisation directly invest over £30 million in more than 300 social ventures.

Power Up was born from the Corporate Social Venturing (CSV) England programme, devised by Big Issue Invest. The programme was created to support, develop and increase the sustainability of early stage social ventures. Along with its predecessor SPARK, CSV England has invested £4 million in 56 ventures to date, with mentors and companies still actively involved in several of these businesses seven years later.