29 Oct Social Impact Partners commits HK$3 million loan to Rooftop Republic
Hong Kong, 29 October 2019 – Social Impact Partners (“SIP”), a pioneering venture philanthropy fund in Hong Kong, announces its investment of a HK$3 million loan to Rooftop Republic (“RR”), a start-up providing innovative urban farming solutions in Hong Kong and China. In addition to the 3-year loan facility, SIP, through strategic partnerships in marketing, legal, financial and business advisory, will provide pro bono resources in the scale-up of RR.
Established in 2015, RR provides holistic solutions from design to installation and management services to its clients by transforming their urban spaces into productive urban farms. The transformation connects people with their food and helps them understand how food systems can help protect our health, and that of the environment, and nourish inclusive and strong communities.
“Rapid urbanisation has reduced our food production capacity, resulting in a reliance on imported crops, much of which are produced via industrial agriculture. This creates a huge environmental, health and social impact when people are not connected with their food and their local producers.” Said Andrew Tsui, Chief Executive Officer, RR. “Our mission is to make our cities more liveable by integrating urban farming into our lifestyle.”
RR has helped clients turn under-utilised spaces into urban farms. In addition, RR’s innovative business model involves employment of local organic farmers and socially disadvantaged groups. In 2017, RR won the Hong Kong Social Enterprise Awards for Most Outstanding Social Enterprise and Most Outstanding Innovation Award.
“RR provides an innovative way to address this global systemic issue by establishing an urban farming eco-system consisting of corporates, city-dwellers, local farmers and community organisations. RR has a proven record in successfully creating value for its clients. We are excited to help it achieve the goal of shaping a more sustainable and circular food system that delivers both societal and environmental benefits.” Said Mingxia Fu, SIP Board Director and Managing Partner and Co-founder of All-Stars Investment Limited.
SIP selects its investees based on the social impact generated by their solutions, the growth potential and the leadership and capability of the management. Comprehensive due diligence performed by SIP’s strategic partners, including, Clifford Chance, Egon Zehnder and PwC, helped support our investment decision.
The investment in RR is a deployment from the second fund of SIP, which was launched in September 2018 with a fund size of US$2 million (HK$15 million).
Social Impact Partners (SIP) is a Hong Kong-based venture philanthropy firm with a mission to enable sustainable change to systemic social issues.
As a financing and strategic partner to growth-stage SPOs (non-profit organisations and social enterprises), SIP creates tailored solutions that help develop the sustainability and scalability that SPOs need to achieve organisational maturity.
While itself is not-for-profit, SIP evaluates all potential SPO partners with the same rigor and due diligence as would a traditional investor deciding a portfolio opportunity. SIP is also distinctly equipped to drive rapid and effective organisational improvement. When SPOs partner with SIP, they are also partnering with SIP’s extensive network of world-class professional experts, long-term funding partners and global industry leaders. By leveraging this network, SIP maximises its investment capital and services to deliver an exponential return on positive social impact.