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Sage Nonprofit Survey on Social Enterprise and Impact Investment Reveals Low Awareness and Participation, Yet High Success Rates

IRVINE, CA--(Marketwire - Dec 12, 2012) -  Sage North America today released the results of its social enterprise and impact investment survey. The survey was a subset of the recently conducted Sage Nonprofit Insights grant management survey of U.S. and Canadian nonprofit organizations.

Social enterprises, organizations that seek to address social or environmental issues while at the same time generating a profit, are becoming more common.

"We are seeing an increase in socially conscious organizations that are weaving a commitment to people and the planet into their missions," said Krista Endsley, senior vice president and general manager of Sage Nonprofit Solutions. "The proliferation of social enterprise programs is moving many organizations into what is called a hybrid model of operation, where both a nonprofit and for-profit entity coexist in order to accomplish a social or environmental mission." 

Impact investing, socially responsible investing that measures an organization's performance in terms of three bottom lines: profit, people and the planet, is an emerging industry and funding opportunity for nonprofits. The questions asked in this survey were used to gauge awareness and participation in social enterprise and impact investment among nonprofits.

The survey revealed that 32 percent of the respondents didn't know whether or not their organization has partnered with a social enterprise, while 17 percent either currently partner with a social enterprise or plan to in the future. Those that are partnering or collaborating with social enterprises are benefiting from the relationship; 90 percent who have partnered or collaborated with social enterprise, report the partnerships as "very" to "somewhat successful." 

There was also a low level of awareness and understanding of what impact investment is among survey takers. 32 percent reported they don't know whether or not their organization has sought impact investment. 47 percent responded that they have not sought impact investment funding, nor do they plan to, while slightly more, 48 percent, reported that their organization has sought or plans to seek impact investment funding in the future. While the survey showed a low level of awareness of impact investing, of the 11 percent of organizations that sought impact investment funding, 91 percent reported their organization was "very" to "somewhat successful" in obtaining it. The most frequently identified areas that are a fit for impact investment according to the organizations surveyed are "health and human services," "community development" and "housing."

This infographic and executive summary highlight key survey results. The online survey was conducted among Sage nonprofit customers as well as members of the Grant Professionals Association during May and June of 2012 and had a total of 853 participants.

Sage has been serving nonprofit and governmental organizations throughout North America for more than 30 years. The company helps more than 32,000 unique not-for-profit organizations increase efficiency and more easily manage their operations through the use of technology. From fund accounting, donor and fundraising management, and grant management to online donation processing, human resources (HR), payroll and fixed asset management, Sage offers a software product or service to meet the organization's need. Follow Sage Nonprofit Solutions on Twitter® (www.twitter.com/SageNonprofit) and Facebook® (www.facebook.com/sagenonprofit), read its blog (www.sagewords.net) and join its community for not-for-profits (http://community.sagenonprofit.com).

About Sage
Sage is a leading global supplier of business management software and services for small and midsized businesses. The Sage Group plc, formed in 1981, was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1989 and now employs more than 13,500 people and supports more than 6 million customers worldwide. For more information about Sage in North America, please visit the company website at NA.Sage.com. Follow Sage North America on Facebook, Facebook.com/SageNorthAmerica, and Twitter, Twitter.com/SageNAmerica.

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