SocialVentures Brings Philanthropitch to Columbus, Makes First Investment

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All photos by Sara Parker.

On August 7, 2018, SocialVentures held its fourth annual Positioned to Prosper event to celebrate the advancements of the social enterprise sector in Central Ohio. Presented by AEP Foundation, and sponsored by Dispatch Media Group, Ernst & Young, Huntington and OhioHealth, the event drew more than 200 social entrepreneurs, funders, community partners and business professionals.

First Annual Philanthropitch Columbus Competition Scheduled for March 4, 2019

During the event which took place at the Columbus Museum of Art, Allen Proctor, president & CEO, SocialVentures, announced that SocialVentures will co-host the first annual Philanthropitch in Columbus on March 4, 2019. Philanthropitch is a social impact fast-pitch competition on a mission to scale innovative nonprofits. Presented by Kiwanis Club of Columbus and co-hosted by SocialVentures, Philanthropitch Columbus will take place at the Speaker Jo Ann Davidson Theatre in the Riffe Center Theatre Complex.

The first annual Philanthropitch Columbus will showcase a high-impact group of innovative nonprofits in Columbus. Culminating in a social impact celebration, Philanthropitch nonprofits walk away from the event not only with the capital to implement their model, but also new skills-based volunteers, donors and coaches for ongoing success. Founded in 2013 in Austin, Philanthropitch has awarded more than $600,000 to empower nonprofits to expand their impact.

With an application period opening later this year, Philanthropitch Columbus selects participating nonprofits based on the scalability and sustainability of their impact-based model. Philanthropitch is operated by Notley, a catalyst for social innovation on a mission to scale and support businesses, nonprofits, individuals, and programs making positive change in the world.

Philanthropitch is redefining how corporations and communities award charitable donations while establishing an ecosystem that prizes social innovation in the nonprofit sector. Instead of attending the traditional fundraising gala, audience members can vote for their favorite nonprofit finalist to receive the event’s ticket proceeds as part of the Audience Choice Award.

“SocialVentures is thrilled to co-host Columbus’ inaugural Philanthropitch event, Notley Ventures’ inspired platform for engaging the corporate community with philanthropy in new and exciting ways,” said Proctor. “The nonprofit and social enterprise sectors are exploring new paths in their collective quest for social justice, and SocialVentures and Philanthropitch will bring new energy to the movement.”

The Philanthropitch Columbus social impact pitch competition features a judges’ panel including Doug Ulman, president & CEO of Pelotonia and Columbus 2017 Nonprofit CEO of the Year. Additional judges will be announced later this year representing Columbus’ community of successful entrepreneurs and philanthropists investing in nonprofit innovation.

Corporate teams also have an opportunity to participate in Philanthropitch as corporate supporters during the branded check presentation of the awards. Current Columbus corporate supporters include Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams.

Opportunities to become a judge, sponsor or corporate supporter are available for local individuals and organizations interested in getting involved. Contact the Philanthropitch team at questions@philanthropitch.org to learn more or visit www.philanthropitch.org.

Social Ventures Fund Makes First Investment in Roosevelt Coffee Roasters

In 2017, SocialVentures completed its first closing of Social Ventures Fund, a member-based private fund for accredited individuals, companies, and foundations to invest in local growth-stage social enterprises. The fund is managed by SocialVentures, a 501c3 nonprofit organization, and is the first fund of its kind in Central Ohio.

During the presentation at Positioned to Prosper, Proctor announced that Social Ventures Fund had made its first investment of $50,000 in Roosevelt Coffee Roasters. Kenny Sipes, founder of the Roosevelt Coffeehouse, came to the stage to talk about his new business and to tell attendees how critical capital is to the potential of our community.

“We are grateful as an entity creating social impact in the areas of unclean water, hunger, and human trafficking to have the support and financial backing of the Social Ventures fund,” said Sipes. “The past three years of momentum at The Roosevelt Coffeehouse led us to a position to make this request and succeed in getting its approval.”

Roosevelt Coffee is a for-profit C-corporation wholly owned by Redeeming Injustice Foundation, a 501c3 that is also owner of The Roosevelt Coffeehouse, also a 501c3. The loan will fund the purchase of equipment, lease of space in Franklinton, operating expenses for the first three months (July – September 2018) and promotional launch of the roaster. The roaster will provide beans to the coffeehouse and sell wholesale and retail roasted beans in Central Ohio under the Roosevelt brand.

Social Ventures Fund remains open to new investors through January 2019. Contact SocialVentures by sending an email to info@socialventurescbus.com for more information. For more information on the roaster, visit roosevelt.coffee.

The Metropreneur Announces Finalists for Sixth Annual Social Enterprise of the Year Awards

SocialVentures is again partnering with The Metropreneur to present the sixth annual Social Enterprise of the Year awards on September 13 at Aspire 2018. At Positioned to Prosper, Susan Post, lead staff writer with The Metropreneur, announced this year’s finalists.

For the category of Emerging Social Enterprise of the Year, finalists include:

  • School Performance Institute
  • In(form)ed
  • EmpowerBus

The honorees for the Nonprofit Sustainability Award are:

  • Art & Clay on Main AND Square Seven Coffee House
  • Bikes For All People
  • Downsize with a Heart

For the category of Social Enterprise of the Year, the finalists are:

  • Besa
  • Coffee Crafters Academy
  • Ruling Our Experiences (ROX)

More information about the Social Enterprise of the Year Awards and Aspire is available on The Metropreneur.


Founded in 2014, SocialVentures advances remarkably good businesses—businesses that intentionally integrate social impact as a non-negotiable component of their business model. SocialVentures supports these nonprofit and for-profit businesses so that entrepreneurs, consumers and beneficiaries of their mission-driven endeavors are all better positioned to prosper. To learn more, visit socialventurescbus.com.