Led by Ben Franklin, its initial partners include Spring Point Partners, Investor's Circle, Drexel University, Temple University, Safeguard Scientifics, Independence Health Group, and the Bucks County Retirement Board. Formed through the support of funding from a U.S. Economic Development Administration grant to Ben Franklin in 2016, ImpactPHL Ventures’ unique model unites existing impact investors with other seasoned investors that are now incorporating social outcomes into their investment performance criteria.
ImpactPHL Ventures is an initiative of ImpactPHL, a collaborative formed one year ago with the goal of growing the region’s impact economy through efforts that attract and retain capital and talent. ImpactPHL is an outcome of the report Growing the Impact Economy of Greater Philadelphia, which was issued by ImpactPHL last summer.
Q: What is it?
A: A $15 million funding initiative specifically focused on growing early-stage, impact companies in Greater Philadelphia.
Q: How does it work?
A: Capital partners each pledge to fund the growth of early-stage technology-based impact companies in Greater Philadelphia (Philadelphia, Bucks, Montgomery, Chester, and Delaware counties).
While each capital partner may identify potential opportunities, Ben Franklin is responsible for developing deal flow and conducting due diligence on prospective companies. Investment partners have the option to participate in the funding round for all such companies receiving favorable review from Ben Franklin. Ben Franklin will administer the funding for all qualifying companies.
Q: What do you mean by “impact”?
A: We are investing in companies that are tackling environmental, educational, health and wellness, civic and other social issues through their use of technology.
Q: Can other investors participate in these rounds?
A: Like all investments administered by Ben Franklin, these investments require matching investments in each round. Ben Franklin will share its due diligence with qualified investors.
Q: Will other investors be able to participate in this initiative?
A: Yes. We know that other investors may be interested in joining this funding initiative and welcome other partners. Follow up with Margaret Berger Bradley.
Q: What companies can qualify for this funding?
A: Seed and early-stage technology-enabled companies intending to have significant environmental or social impact results, located in, or with significant business presence within, Philadelphia, Bucks, Montgomery, Chester, and Delaware Counties.
What will be the size of funds committed in each company?
A: Depending on each company’s objectives and due diligence results, commitments to each company may range from $50,000 up to $1 million.
Can companies receive multiple rounds of funding from this partnership?
A: Yes. Pending Ben Franklin’s due diligence, companies can pursue multiple rounds of funding, with a maximum commitment of $1 million in each company.
How can companies pursue this funding opportunity?
A: Interested companies should initiate discussions with Ben Franklin.
When does this start?
A: It already has. There has already been active collaboration on opportunities to deploy these funds.
How’s this any different than a typical Ben Franklin investment?
A: The investment process is almost identical to Ben Franklin’s process. We will identify and track specific social impact indicators alongside financial metrics and are working to develop new advisory and complementary follow-on funding resources for these portfolio companies.
Contact Margaret Berger Bradley to learn more about the initiative.