Fund investors invest in and support the entire Beneficial Returns portfolio. They get no financial return, but benefit from our first loss reserve.
On the other hand, Loan Investors identify a specific loan they want to take part in. They receive a modest financial return, but do not benefit from our first loss reserve.
The minimum investment amount is $10,000.
Our investors recover 100% of their investment* but don’t earn a positive financial return. This enables us to offer generous terms to our social enterprise borrowers while covering 100% of our operating expenses.
We balance risk with rigor, and our portfolio’s strong track record is a testament to our approach. As of December 2022, we recognized one loan default, representing 3% of the total funded loans since inception. Furthermore, our investors’ investments are protected by our first-loss reserve, which covers at least 20% of the principal outstanding.
Investors can either receive 1/7th of their money back every year over a seven-year term, or all at once after seven years. This permits us to make long-term loans to our social enterprises.
Yes. And if you’re a US tax-payer, your investment may be considered a charitable donation. You just won’t be able to get repaid – your investment will be repaid to the non-profit of your choice.
Lending to social enterprises in the developing world is inherently risky, but it's exactly what is needed to eliminate poverty while protecting and preserving the environment.
If you’re looking for a low-risk investment or a high-return investment, Beneficial Returns isn’t for you.
That being said, we are confident that we will continue our track record of making all contractually agreed-upon payments to our investors. This is because:
- We only lend to established social enterprises that have proven business models and capable, committed entrepreneurs at the helm
- We seldom lend more than 10% of an enterprise’s annual revenue, and we always make fully-amortizing loans with monthly repayment
- Nearly all of our loans are secured by collateral
- We maintain a loan loss reserve of over 30% of our net principal balance outstanding to absorb losses before it would affect our investors
- Our team of finance professionals and volunteer credit committee conduct thorough due diligence before we make a loan.
At Beneficial Returns, we welcome investors who invest in our main debt fund that makes loans of $50,000 – $500,000 to social enterprises that reduce poverty in Latin America and Southeast Asia. Some investors, however, wish to direct their capital to one particular social enterprise, or they want to earn a financial return. Participation offers both these benefits.
A loan participation is a fixed-income security; participants are buying a portion of a Beneficial Returns loan and can earn up to 4.5% per annum by participating in a new or seasoned BR loan.
Beneficial Returns provides its loan participants complete transparency. Interested investors who wish to participate in a loan have access to all Beneficial Returns’ credit and impact analyses of their selected enterprise, as well as direct introduction to the borrower.
In addition, Beneficial Returns will provide regular reports on the enterprise as well as take charge of all loan administration through to final payment. Participants and their families will also be invited on impact trips to visit the enterprises and the communities they impact.
Beneficial Returns never offers more than 80% of a loan for participation. This means we always maintain a minimum exposure of 20% to each loan. Our “skin in the game” means we are committed to only working with high-impact social enterprises and we are motivated to collect the payments we are owed.
Investors can buy a participation of $20,000 up to 80% of the principal outstanding on a loan.
Participants are repaid quarterly over the life of the loan.
Investors can purchase a participation in a brand-new loan, or they can purchase a participation for the remaining payments in an existing loan with a track record of repayment.
Participations afford you the flexibility to pick exactly which loan(s) you invest in, and exactly how much you want to invest in each. You will also earn a financial return.
You lose the benefit of diversification and Beneficial Returns’ loan loss reserves which protect fund investors against credit losses. If you participate in a loan that only recovers 50% of the original investment, you will only recover 50% of your original investment.
Provided that the borrower makes all its contracted payments, you will earn a 4.5% annual yield. As an impact bonus, Beneficial Returns waives the final payment for borrowers who make all prior payments on time and can exceed a pre-determined and agreed upon impact metric. As a participant to the loan, this mechanism may reduce your overall return.
Eradicating poverty is our and our borrowers’ primary objective. We believe outstanding social enterprises focus on the most vulnerable, under-served populations. They provide several meaningful, sustainable positive changes to their beneficiaries’ lives.
Examples of impact delivery models include improving the incomes of those along the agricultural supply chain and providing access to essential utilities such as clean water and reliable energy.
No rule is set in stone, especially for enterprises whose impact is deep and meaningful. Nevertheless, as a quick rule of thumb, we lend to companies that have:
- At least three years of operations, and
- At least US $500k in revenues
We typically offer fixed-interest term loans secured by capital assets, with monthly repayments. If most of your work involves indigenous peoples, consider our other mandate, The Reciprocity Fund, which offers more flexible products such as working capital loans and revenue share products.
We price our loans competitively, with 6-12% p.a. interest rates. We balance our loan pricing with the risks of your business which we learn and appreciate during due diligence. We also consider the impact of your enterprise.
In fact, we usually offer an impact bonus. We measure our success in the growth and deepening of our borrowers’ impact outcomes. Thus, through the impact bonus, we waive a portion of or the entire final payment if you make all payments on time and meet an impact target by the end of the loan.
We currently offer loans denominated in USD.
Our commitment is to be quick and transparent so you can focus more time and effort on running your social enterprise. We estimate an average of two to three months from initial contact to funding.
Do you have more questions?
If you have more questions about our funds, projects, careers, and other opportunities, please send us a message.