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Triodos Bank acquires social impact bond consultancy

EBSI aquisition will help develop financing solutions for local authorities

EBSI aquisition will help develop financing solutions for local authorities

Last month, Triodos Bank acquired consultancy Evidence Based Social Investments Limited to advise local authorities on commissioning Social Impact Bonds for financing social support programmes. EBSI CEO Roger Bullen will join Triodos, bringing a wealth of experience in developing outcomes-based finance for towns and cities across the UK.

Established in 2015, EBSI has successfully worked with a number of local authority commissioners to develop and deliver commissioning contracts funded through social investment. However, as a small start-up entering a challenging market place, EBSI Ltd ultimately encountered longer than expected delays in closing transactions and in October 2016 ran out of funding and entered into a creditors’ voluntary liquidation.

The acquisition is a strategic development for Triodos Bank’s Corporate Finance team, as it will extend the range of advisory services that they provide and help clients develop and finance new social interventions to support the most vulnerable members of society. With increasingly pressured budgets, many Local Authorities want diversify their income streams to include SIBs, but common problems such as long timescales and complexity can prevent access to investment capital. However, with a focus on local authority commissioners and the experience built up by EBSI, Triodos believes that these barriers can be overcome.

“Triodos Bank has a strong track record developing social impact bonds that address challenging social issues in the UK like homelessness and youth employment,” said Dan Hird, Head of Corporate Finance.  “Our experience tells us that a flexible approach that’s focussed on the local authority commissioner can add much more value and that’s exactly what EBSI adds to our team.

“We are excited to welcome Roger Bullen to Triodos and look forward to combining his experience with ours, helping us realise the potential with current EBSI clients and in the wider market.”

Roger brings with him a wealth of experience working with local authorities. As a commissioner with Essex County Council, Roger established the UK’s first social impact bond for children in and at the edge of care in 2012. He brings with him EBSI’s pipeline and all ongoing projects and extends the bank’s commitment to the emerging SIB sector in the UK.

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