Impact Investment Fund

Austin Community Foundation is committed to creating meaningful change in Austin through philanthropy. Our city’s current needs far exceed the Foundation’s grantmaking resources. When challenges and opportunities out-pace resources, it’s time to expand the ways we support innovative solutions for pressing needs.

Austin Community Foundation has established an Impact Investment Fund, a new tool in our community-building toolbox. The Impact Investment Fund will augment the Foundation’s current grantmaking and put a greater portion of our assets to work doing social good in our community than ever before. See our Call for Investments to submit a Letter of Inquiry for your nonprofit or for-profit social venture.

What is Impact Investing?

Impact investing is any type of investment structured to generate both a financial return and a measurable social return. Examples include:

  • short-term loan to scale up a nonprofit’s earned income line of business
  • equity investment in for-profit social enterprise companies
  • bridge loan for a nonprofit to purchase real estate
  • loan to a community development financial institution to fund small business loans to people with otherwise limited resources.

Why Impact Investing? 

By launching the Impact Investment Fund, we can:

  • Put a greater portion of our resources to work than ever before
  • Increase the amount of capital available to address community needs
  • Recycle philanthropic capital
  • Scale solutions to local problems
  • Engage donors who seek to augment their philanthropy with impact investment
  • Supplement the Foundation’s traditional grantmaking

How Impact Investment Helped One Nonprofit Further Its Mission

  • A nonprofit needed to purchase equipment to employ clients as part of its mission to provide employment opportunities and wages to people with disabilities.
  • The nonprofit applied for a loan of $50,000 to be paid back within 5 years at 2% interest.
  • As part of the loan agreement, the nonprofit set financial and social metrics.
  • This arrangement put funds into our local community now and allows the Foundation to recycle those funds once they are paid back.

Our Investment Parameters

  • We will consider making loans or equity investments to nonprofits and social enterprise companies working in Central Texas that offer a unique or innovative solution to a local need in one of our Community Impact Areas:
    • Arts & culture
    • Animals
    • Community engagement
    • Education
    • Environment & public space
    • Health & wellness
    • Human services/basic needs
    • Recreation
  • Investments are made ideally for 3-5 years and no more than 7 years
  • Investments may range up to $250,000

See our Call for Investments to submit a Letter of Inquiry for your nonprofit or for-profit social venture.

Investing in Local Ideas and People

The Foundation's Impact Investment Fund augments grantmaking and puts a greater portion of the organization’s assets to work doing social good in Central Texas.