Blogs tagged with Growth capital

  • Peter Kim, The Bridgespan Group and Heather Peeler, Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    Posted: July 29, 2014

    It’s hard for nonprofits to raise money for their day-to-day work. It’s even harder to raise money to grow their impact.

    Funders and nonprofit leaders tend to focus on programs and expansion plans. That’s the sexy stuff that attracts support. Too few invest adequately in building the organizational capacity needed to lay the tracks for future growth—what Bridgespan’s Paul Carttar calls the “unsexy” side of scaling.

    What explains this dilemma? Many nonprofit leaders find it hard to be forthcoming with funders about what their organizations really need to execute a growth strategy—whether it’s leadership development, IT support, financial management, or performance measurement. By and large, grantmakers do not provide support that adequately addresses those needs.

    This disconnect shaped a key takeaway from the panel on Capacity Building for Sustainability at the recent Social Impact Exchange Conference: most nonprofits can’t invest enough in the organizational capacity they need to stay ahead of their own growth curve. In short, great programs may flourish, but the organizations behind them fail to keep up—an unsustainable mismatch. What will it take to ensure organizations are prepared to take programs to scale?

  • Vanessa Wilkins, Partners in Scale
    Posted: June 18, 2013

    The following blog post reflects on a breakout session that took place at the Social Impact Exchange's Symposium on Scaling Impact, June 17.

    How do you define sustainability? Reliable and repeatable revenue that covers the full cost of your enterprise and aligns with your mission – at least that’s how Kristin Giantris from the Nonprofit Finance Fund defined it at the “Financial Models: Achieving Sustainability at Scale” session at the Symposium on Scaling Social Impact Monday.

    Panelists Matt Aguiar from Reading Partners, a school tutoring program that’s grown from $2 million in revenue to $16 million since 2006, and David Carleton from Catalyst Kitchens, the business plan winner at last year’s conference, shared lessons from two very different financial models.

    At Partners in Scale, we work with clients looking to scale their impact. Even the most sustainable organizations struggle with how to fund the infrastructure they need to scale their model, and how to ensure sustainability for their programs at a much larger scale, often in different geographies.