Creative Economy | July 28, 2017

Nesta’s Arts Impact Fund backs creative companies and art entrepreneurs

The team at


The arts and creative community has largely been ignored by impact investors.

Nesta launched the Arts Impact Fund in 2015 to meet demand for loans among the arts community. The U.K. foundation has loaned £2.4 million ($3.1 million) to eight organizations from its £7 million Arts Impact Fund, doubling its portfolio.

The new crop of borrowers include the Birmingham Royal Ballet, East London creative community and arts venue Village Underground, and Bradford-based performance venue Fuse.

Nesta’s financial partners in the fund include Arts Council England, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and the Esmee Fairbairn and Calouste Gulbenkian foundations.

Nesta plans to finish investing with the fund in early 2018 and begin raising a new fund next year. (Listen to “Artists as Social Entrepreneurs” a Returns on Investment podcast with Upstart Co-Lab founder Laura Callanan).