HC Deb 26 April 2004 vol 420 cc757-8W
Mrs. Curtis-Thomas

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on the Adventure Capital Fund. [165884]

Fiona Mactaggart

The Adventure Capital Fund was launched in December 2002 to pioneer a new form of long-term investment in community enterprises. The Fund represents a unique partnership between the Government Departments (the Home Office, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and the Department of Trade and Industry), and several Regional Development Agencies, as funders, and four leading voluntary organisations in the field of social and economic regeneration, as delivery partners. The delivery partners are the Development Trusts Association, the Scarman Trust, the New Economics Foundation and the Local Investment Fund which is the accountable body for the fund.

The aim of the fund is to demonstrate an effective way of providing 'patient capital' to fill the investment gap faced by community organisations wishing to move from grant dependency to sustainability through developing enterprise. This gap was clearly identified in the Social Investment Task Force report (October 2001) and the more recent Bank of England Report on Finance for Social Enterprise (May 2003).

In 2003, Home Office Funding totalling £2 million was invested in 10 community enterprises, with a further £375,000 being awarded to 25 organisations in pre-investment business development grants with funding from four Regional Development Agencies (Yorkshire and Humber), East Midlands, East of England and London). In 2004, a total of £4.5 million is available from Home Office assets recovery and the DTI Phoenix Fund, plus some further allocations from RDAs for business development grants. All grant and investment recipients receive one-to-one organisational development support. The cost of this support, of management of the Fund and evaluation of the programme has been met by ODPM's Neighbourhood Renewal Unit.