Nov. 30, 2016 12:46 pm

Investors’ Circle received $3M to polish their social entrepreneurs

A legacy gift from the Hitachi Foundation will allow the national impact investor network to help its portfolio entrepreneurs run their businesses better.

Wash Cycle Laundry founder Gabriel Mandujano.

(Courtesy photo)

“Human capital strategy” is a fancy term for the ways in which a company manages its culture and its staff. Investors’ Circle (IC), the national impact investing network, just landed a $3 million grant to help their portfolio social entrepreneurs get a lot better at it.

Stay with us. It doesn’t sound sexy, but it’s pretty important.

Social entrepreneurs need guidance after investment, both for the sake of their own success and their investors’. With this $3 million, a legacy grant from the Washington, D.C.-based Hitachi Foundation, social entrepreneurs like Wash Cycle Laundry founder Gabriel Mandujano and United By Blue founder Brian Linton will be able to access resources that help them grow — and help their investors make money.

But it’s a two-sided coin. The grant also makes professional resources available to early-stage impact investors within the network. That’s crucial for local impact investors who, in Philadelphia, are hoping to find similar supports through ImpactPHL.

“As the impact investing field grows, it is imperative that we continue to develop the early-stage investor pipeline,” said IC Board Chair Jim Davidson in a statement. “Investors’ Circle plays a critical role in this work, and the Foundation’s gift will help a diverse group of investors engage in early-stage investing in a collaborative and forward-thinking way.”

Think of it this way: With additional supports from existing investors, social enterprises will be able to grow and reel in additional capital. Take Mandujano, for example, who, after landing capital from IC investors, found additional investments from funders like the Patricia Kind Family Foundation.

“Investors’ Circle has been a great partner to Wash Cycle Laundry, helping us to access the right capital at the right time,” said Mandujano. “I’m excited about how this gift will help IC accelerate Wash Cycle and other mission-driven companies, as well as show entrepreneurs and investors how to think more strategically about their human capital strategy.”

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All in all, great news for Philly social entrepreneurs in IC’s portfolio. But let’s go ahead and throw “human capital strategy” in the bag of important terms that need rebranding.


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