Social Enterprise Angels - Social Investing In Action

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2009 Request for Letters of Intent

Social Enterprise Angels is an exciting event to be featured at the Third Canadian Conference on Social Enterprise, organized by the Social Enterprise Council of Canada (SECC). The Conference, which runs from November 18-20, 2009, in Toronto, Ontario, is expected to draw over 300 social enterprise managers, funders, supporters and policy-makers from across the country. Social Enterprise Angels will occur on November 19, 2009, from 5:00-6:30pm. In partnership with the SECC, the event is co-hosted by Social Venture Partners Toronto.

Social Enterprise Angels is inspired by the CBC television series, The Dragon's Den, where aspiring entrepreneurs pitch their business idea to a panel of investors in hopes of securing funding for their venture. Social Enterprise Angels uses a similar model to demonstrate and promote the value of financial investment in social enterprise. The event will feature three of Canada's top social entrepreneurs, selected from among a pool of nation-wide applicants. These selected social entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to pitch their social enterprise to a panel of judges, or "Angels" in front of a live audience, in hopes of securing up to $30,000 for their projects. The Angels include representatives from the social enterprise sector, the private sector, and Social Venture Partners Toronto.

Social Enterprise Council of Canada is requesting letters of intent from social enterprises operating in Canada who are seeking investment towards the start up and/or growth of their enterprises and who would like to participate in this event.


Applicant Criteria:

This competition is open to start up and established social enterprises operating in Canada seeking investment to contribute to the start up and/or growth of their enterprises. Social enterprise in this context is broadly defined: "enterprises that are run like businesses, producing goods and services for the market economy, but they manage their operations and redirect their surpluses in pursuit of social and community goals" owned and operated by charities, non-profit organizations or non-share cooperatives. The goals of the enterprise could be environmental, employment, arts and culture, or to generate revenue for the parent organization. To qualify, enterprises must:

  • Be based in Canada
  • Have a comprehensive business plan (further details below)
  • Be committed to attending the Conference at their own expense
  • Complete the letter of intent available at the end of the letter, and submit electronically. Letters will be accepted in either English or French.
  • Organizations/enterprises with a member of the Social Enterprise Council of Canada on their payroll or serving as a member of their board of directors are ineligible.


Application Process:

1) Letter of intent - due September 14, 2009

Complete the Letter of Intent provided at the end of this document and return electronically to All Letters of Intent will assessed by a Selection Committee in light of the following criteria:

  • The scope / impact of the social enterprise
  • The viability of the social enterprise
  • The alignment of the organization's mission with the social enterprise
  • The use of the investment to grow the social enterprise

The Letters are due on Monday, September 14, 2009 at 5:00 pm EST.

From the submitted Letters of Intent, the Social Enterprise Angels Selection Committee will select thirteen shortlisted applicants, and invite them to submit a comprehensive business plans for their social enterprise. All applicants will be informed of their status by October 5, 2009.


2) Business plan - due October 13, 2009

For those selected to submit a business plan, this will be due on: October 13, 2009. The business plan must include:

  • A feasibility study
  • A marketing plan
  • A business operations plan
  • A financial plan
  • An executive summary

Business plans should be between 10 - 20 pages in length. They should be returned electronically and all in one document to

The Selection Committee will review the business plans and select three finalists to present their social enterprises to a live audience and a panel of judges at the Third Canadian Conference on Social Enterprise. Those selected to participate in the event will be notified by Wednesday November 4, 2009.


3) Social Enterprise Angels Event - held on November 19, 2009

The three finalists will make their pitch at the Conference and compete for funds from the individual funders.

In order to prepare for the event, applicants will be offered coaching sessions to hone their presentation skills before "pitching" their enterprise to the Social Enterprise Angels in 5-7 minutes. The Social Enterprise Angels will select the winner(s) at the end of the event.


Letter of Intent

Social Enterprise Angels: Social Investing In Action


Name of organization:





Name of enterprise:

Address (if different from organization):

Contact person:




1. Do you have a business plan? (Please underline one)




2. Is your organization: (Please underline all that apply)



Non-share co-operative


3. What is the purpose and mission of your organization?


4. Please tell us about your social enterprise (concept) in 35 words:


5. What were the gross sales revenue for your enterprise in 2008? If Ø, what is your first year budget?


6. Please describe your product(s) and/or service(s):


7. What is the social/cultural/environmental objective of the enterprise?


8. Please circle the stage of development that best describes your social enterprise:

Planning Start up Growth


9. When did you start your social enterprise if started (or when do you plan to start it)?


10. Number of people employed at your social enterprise (or number of people to be employed):

__________ Part time _________ Full time ________ Volunteers

11. What size of investment do you need to grow your enterprise?


12. How will you use this investment? Please include the time frame.