Rhiza Capital is a joint initiative between Community Futures Sunshine Coast, Sunshine Coast Credit Union and Powell River Community Investment Corporation (PRCIC). These partners are joining forces to raise local capital for investment in ventures that will add economic, social and financial value to our communities. Here is a video introduction to our local, impact investing strategy:
*Rhiza, Greek in origin, refers to a root structure. Rhiza Capital is intent on growing local economies and healthy communities by connecting root capital to impact ventures.
Impact investments are investments made into companies, organizations, and funds with the intention to generate social and environmental impact alongside a financial return.
This collaboration involves interconnected roles being fulfilled by each of the partners. Each is committed to supporting this initiative and building a strong local investment ecosystem.
There are three vehicles to support local investment:
Rhiza Capital’s Coastal Venture Root One (the “VCC1”), formally incorporated as Sunshine Coast Venture Partners VCC, is a corporation registered for the sole purpose of investing funds in a number of start-up, emerging and expanding eligible small businesses.
VCC1 invests in companies that can offer its investors a 30% fully refundable tax credit. VCC1 is primarily invested in health tech, education tech and social tech companies. See our Where page for the list of VCC1 Companies.
An appropriately investable company is an Eligible Business Corporation (EBC). To whit, an EBC is a business that is resident in BC, primarily employs BC residents (75%+) and falls into one of six sectors: manufacturing, tourism, R&D of tech, digital media, diversification of rural economies, clean tech. Within the Sunshine Coast region, any business that diversifies and strengthens the local economy is a potential Eligible Business Corporation.
Rhiza Capital’s Coastal Venture Root Two (the “VCC2”), is a corporation registered for the sole purpose of investing funds in a number of start-up, emerging and expanding eligible small businesses. This will be our second portfolio launching early in 2016. VCC2 will also be comprised of companies that can offer its investors a 30% fully refundable tax credit and is an RRSP eligible investment.
Rhiza Capital’s Coastal Community Investment Fund (the “CIC”) is a for-profit corporation, regulated by the provincial securities laws.
The CIC uses the Private Issuers exemption, limiting its potential investors to 50 or fewer friends, family, close business associates and Accredited Investors.
The key advantage to CIC is that ownership can be multiple or singular, and with various types of share classes, raising as much (or as little) investment capital as it sees fit.
A unique opportunity afforded by the flexible share class structure of CIC is to mitigate risk for investor-shareholders by creating a preferred share class(es) where capital preservation and a preferential dividend can be offered. The other investor-shareholders and/or the sponsor of the fund [Rhiza Capital] take on any excess risk through preferred shares of a more junior class, or vis a vis the common share class.
The Coast Community Investment Co-op was formed to secure capital through the sale of shares in the co-operative, and invest it onward in local social venture.
The Co-op, registered with the provincial government as a for-profit co-operative, identifies, or is approached by, local entrepreneurs with a business opportunity in need of investment.
Members/Shareholders of the Co-op review the business plan and often provide advice about it. They then agree on the best way to assist the business with debt financing (a loan) or equity financing (land, equipment or as co-owners).
Here is a graphic showing our workflow process.
The practice of impact investing is defined by the following four core characteristics:
An investor’s intention to have a positive social or environmental impact through investments is essential to impact investing.
Impact investments are expected to generate a financial return on capital or, at minimum, a return of capital.
Impact investments target financial returns that range from below market (sometimes called concessionary) to risk-adjusted market rate, and can be made across asset classes, including but not limited to cash equivalents, fixed income, venture capital, and private equity.
A hallmark of impact investing is the commitment of the investor to measure and report the social and environmental performance and progress of underlying investments, ensuring transparency and accountability while informing the practice of impact investing and building the field.
Innovation and Design of Impact Investments
Leadership and management
Strategic business plans
Community Economic Development
Governance and Policy Development
A social entrepreneur is someone who recognizes a social problem and uses entrepreneurial principles to organize, create, and manage a venture to make social change (a social venture).
Barter is a community of people sharing knowledge to make things better for the home. Our products tell a story of the West Coast. They speak of the natural beauty of our materials, the breadth of our craftspeople, and the laid-back, nature-inspired lifestyles we live. We believe that a well-designed object is something that you use, cherish and keep for a long, long time. We take inspiration from the natural resources that surround us, and insist on using them respectfully. We believe in community, and create objects designed to bring us together. #BCMADE
Welcome to The Hangar Climbing Lounge! A fresh new gathering place here on the SUNSHINE COAST. We have designed this gym to be your home away from home. This is a BOULDERING ONLY gym which allows us to provide members with 24/7 access, letting you choose the music and help yourself to the self serve honour system snack and beverage bar. We believe in building community, being fit and having as much fun as possible in the process. No matter your skill level from absolute newbie to seasoned climber you will find a community of friendly and helpful people gathered at The Hangar having loads of fun and pushing themselves as far as their personal limits allow.
ChangeHeroes is a fundraising platform designed to reduce the cost of raising funds for non-profits, access the previously-difficult-to-reach Millennial donor market, and increase the virality of fundraising campaigns. Their model allows a non-profit to white label a campaign using the ChangeHeroes platform, positioning supporters of the non-profit to run individual mini-campaigns that include a personally recorded video and a social media-propogated ask out to 33 friends and family within their close circle of contacts. It hits all the marks of what are recognized as the hallmarks of Millennial giving behaviour. The revenue model includes an initial setup fee per non-profit and a commission on all funds raised.
ChatterHigh addresses the the knowledge and communication gap between the post-secondary institutions, trade associations and corporations that need to convey the opportunities available once school-age children (Gr. 6-12) graduate, and the school-age children that need to be informed in order to make effective and empowered choices leading up to graduation. What ChatterHigh has done is built a platform that gamifies the process of researching the options for the future. The revenue model is based on a fee-per-click, charged to the post-secondary institution, when a child clicks on a link to research the answer to a quiz question provided by the same institution.
Cognilab has created an online platform for the development and execution of academic-calibre psychological experimentation. This allows for a significant reduction in costs and execution time, reducing both by 50-90%. Additional benefits of the system include the ability to make a primary research tool broadly available to undergrad students for the first time, access to remote populations and commercial applications in the arenas of market and political research. Cognilab will own much of the data that is generated using its platform, positioning it to be the single largest repository of date on human cognition…ever. The revenue model is a hybrid of a subscription-based software as a service approach and a per-participant commission for those participants sourced through Cognilab.
Ethelo Decisions has developed a cloud-based software solution that significantly reduces the cost of stakeholder engagement, while also improving the outcomes, by allowing each participant to variably weigh the value of each variable in the consideration process. Then, Ethelo’s proprietary algorithm calculates both the sum total of all possible variants and the most successful possible outcomes given the participant’s feedback. The revenue model layers a consultation fee to cover the fixed costs of set up and a software as a service subscription fee for the length of the engagement.
SHM Controls has developed a technology that allows owners and managers of small to mid-sized apartment buildings to reduce the natural gas costs associated with their boiler-based heating systems by 25-40%. The system utilizes a small control box that is easily installed on any boiler, small wireless sensors throughout the building and a proprietary algorithm to modulate the boiler to achieve maximum efficiency and tenant comfort. The revenue model is subscription-based software as a service, with no cost of equipment for the client.
ViewsIQ has developed advanced digitization technology specific to the work of pathologists and their microscopic analysis of slide-based samples. Largely a software solution, ViewsIQ allows the pathologist to analyze a sample as they would from their own microscope, with the ability to manage magnification, depth of field and focal point, all from their computer at a distance. This allows for potentially lifesaving access to time-sensitive consultations, while also stripping away onerous costs of physical shipping for live samples. The revenue model is split between system sales and the software made available as a subscription service.
Vidigami is described as the “home for your school memories”. It provides a single portal where all photos taken by faculty, staff and parents of a given school can be uploaded, and through advanced facial recognition processes, sorted per student. The service is currently targeted towards private and chartered schools, with the revenue model split between a subscription paid by the school and various photo products made available to families.
Wearable Therapeutics has developed a therapeutic tool for children with autism. Applying the therapeutic technique known as “deep pressure therapy”, it provides for a significant reduction in physiological stress responses like adrenaline and cortisol production. The product has enjoyed the support of major autism advocates in Canada and the US, academic research papers specific to the impact of the product and the recognition of many Provinces and States as a reimbursable expense for families with children with autism. The revenue model is direct sales.
Distill Analytics has created the capacity to build rapid, accurate, profiles of decision makers that assess their capacity to guide organizations through uncertainty and capitalize on opportunity. Our Human Analytics provide rigorous, numeric assessments of the potential of a management team to create value.
Mesh is an online food share marketplace and logistics platform. We match safe and nutritious unsold food to secondary markets in an automated and intelligent way.SAVE MONEY. REDUCE WASTE. FEED MORE.
Popul8 is a leading edge asset management technology company disrupting the way you currently manage your infrastructure. Our solutions provide asset management tools using the latest in digital technologies, such as VR (virtual reality), 360 cameras, and the IoT (Internet of Things). Our digital technology provides you with the convergence of virtual tours and dashboard information that will revolutionize your enterprise. Whether you are in heavy industry, government, HR/education, property management or utilities, we can help you do your job faster, safer, more accurately and more proactively.
At Kindred Spirit Drums we are striving to “Create Vitality Through Sound”. Vitality means to be in a state of “Strength, action and energy” which I feel comes with the excitement of playing a Steel Tongue Drum or Handpan. Right now the world is in great need of a resurrection of the unhindered experimentation with music, to return vitality to the people and to help remove the apathy that the modern-world seems to foster in the human psyche.
Stem Shock is a platform technology for RNA-based precision herbicides, each designed to remove one or more weed species without harming crops or the environment. Each Stem Shock ‘active’ is programmed to kill one or more weeds. Stem Shock offers a solution for controlling weeds resistant to traditional herbicides. A mix of Stem Shock products targeting herbicide resistant weeds will keep these plants under control.
Proxxi is an industrial wearable that keeps watch over people working near medium and high voltage. It is designed to prevent injury or death by alerting the wearer before they enter the ‘limits of approach’ of a high voltage electrical field.
JOURNEY IS AN IMPACT TRAVEL COLLECTIVE
We believe that lasting social change starts within each one of us, and that nothing compares to in-person experiences and human connections to inspire new ways of being. We are rapidly growing a community across North America + Canada through meet-ups, events, international Journeys and a developing leadership program.
The GIIN builds critical market infrastructure and supports activities,
education, and research that help accelerate the development of the
impact investing field. Be sure to check out the following resources:
CASE Smart Impact Capital: https://casesmartimpact.com/capital/
Social Innovation is both a destination — the resolution of complex social and environmental challenges — and a journey — devising new approaches that engage all stakeholders, leveraging their competencies and creativity to design novel solutions.
— Tim Broadhead
Disruptive innovators are inspired by love and motivated by necessity. They challenge the prevailing way of doing things and shake the lethargy off the status quo. They wrestle a big idea to the ground. And yet, even when they prove that the idea works, it does not easily become the new standard. It can be ignored or misunderstood and may even be perceived as a threat to the system. It is not easy to move from the margins to the mainstream. That’s why we need bridging innovators.
— Al Etmanski
Bridging innovators spot the big ideas surfaced by disruptive innovators. They leverage their connections, reputations and resources to make sure the potential is realized. They translate and interpret the value of a disruptive innovation to the system. Bridging innovators are the necessary link between disruptive innovators and receptive innovators.
— Al Etmanski
Receptive innovators are key to implementing big ideas and spreading solutions far and wide. They have an insider’s knowledge of the key levers to advance an issue within a system. They know the formal and informal channels inside bureaucracy and who the key players are. They are navigators, steering the innovation so that
it may flourish and become the new standard.
— Al Etmanski
The purpose of the Co-op is to finance projects that create social and environmental impacts in our community, while also providing a modest financial return to our members. We do this by raising capital through the sale of membership shares. This capital is then invested in local projects and organizations that improve our community.
We have four strategic investment focus areas:
• Food security
• Meaningful work
• Environmental sustainability
• Affordable housing
Our Board of Directors:
All projects take place on the Sunshine Coast. You do not have to be a resident of the Sunshine Coast to become a member.
The Co-op is owned and governed by its members. Members, who can be individuals, or organizations, join the Co-op by purchasing either 25 Member Shares ($2,500), or 50 Member Shares ($5,000). Members benefits include: attending meetings and special events, running for election to the co-op board, and support our investees. We anticipate 1% to 3% financial return on investment, over a minimum of five years.
The co-op carefully vets all potential investments. Applications for investment are initially reviewed by the by the Community Futures/Rhiza Investment Committee. The Co-op Directors, who have been elected by the membership, make the final investment decision. In addition to providing financing, the Co-op also offers additional project development support to investees.
We are holding our next Information Session on Tuesday, June 13, 2017 at 6:30 pm at Wheatberries Bakery, 818 Gibsons Way. This session will focus on opportunities for meaningful, values-based development, and we’ll be brainstorming with attendees. All welcome.
Please email us: CoastInvestmentCoop at gmail.com.
We are delighted by the work of our colleagues who are creating other BC investment cooperatives: Knives and Forks (Vancouver) and Creston & District Community Investment Co-op.