This profile was prepared when Tamzin Ractliffe was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2008.
The New Idea
In 2006 Tamzin launched the Southern African Social Investment Exchange (SASIX) and has already raised more than US$800,000 for development work across Southern Africa. Building on the success of SASIX, Tamzin is now preparing to launch a new, web-based, global social investment marketplace. The Global Social Investment Exchange (GSIX) will provide a range of investment opportunities along a continuum of purely social or combined social/financial in their returns. GSIX is envisaged as a global federation of in-country social investment platforms supported by in-depth information from each country exchange that would allow for a more efficient and dynamic social capital market, and in turn support the creation of a more efficient development sector. GSIX will create an environment to a traditional stock exchange to link citizen sector organizations needing funds for well governed, high impact poverty eradication initiatives with corporate and international social investors and philanthropic donors who want to contribute to development. The GSIX platform will list selected non-profit organizations and make them available as investment opportunities. The return on this investment varies from purely social: improvement in the lives of the disadvantaged and marginalized to a blend of social and financial returns. GSIX will also impress upon the citizen sector the need for accountability and aims to establish a more dynamic social capital market. Indeed, ultimately GSIX indeed support the establishment of the various Social Stock Exchange initiatives currently in planning in various countries, which true Social Stock Exchanges intend to be fully authorized and regulated exchanges for the trading in securities of social enterprises and other social purpose businesses. These Social Stock Exchanges will provide the potential exit route for financial social investments in pre-listed opportunities available on the GSIX platform. GSIX accredited country member platforms will provide independent research, evaluation, and monitoring to ensure that listed projects meet set criteria, including the ability to deliver measurable returns. Investors will be able to “buy” shares in GSIX projects online or through participating brokers and will always have the ability to track the performance of their investments and view their impact online.