Education Innovation Ventures

ECMC Foundation’s program-related investment portfolio, Education Innovation Ventures (EIV), makes below-market-rate investments into nonprofit and for-profit ventures that seek to generate both social impact and financial returns.

Complementing ECMC Foundation’s strategic grantmaking, EIV uses a full spectrum of program-related investments—including debt and equity instruments—to improve educational outcomes and economic mobility among students from underserved backgrounds. These catalytic investments enable the Foundation to tap into the creative power of the nonprofit and for-profit sectors, unlock innovative ideas and build evidence-based practices.

EIV Makes Catalytic Investments

Fund History and Objectives

ECMC Foundation began making program-related investments through EIV in January 2018. EIV provides flexible, risk capital to early-stage ventures and entrepreneurs working to increase educational outcomes and economic mobility among underserved learners. Our investments seed, develop and help new ventures and entrepreneurs prove market viability in order to attract additional financing, grow and scale their work. Financial returns are reinvested into new program-related investments, allowing us to recycle investment dollars and generate further positive impact on learners' lives.

Education Innovation Venture’s Five-Point Model

EIV considers ventures that demonstrate a commitment to delivering intentional, sustained and measurable social impact, and align with the Foundation's mission of inspiring and facilitating improvements in education. We look for the following criteria in our investments:

  1. Risk: Early-stage ventures with transformative and disruptive products and services that address an unmet market need.
  2. Innovation: Ventures that test new and bold ideas, solutions and innovations and build an evidence base for impact.
  3. Scalability: Ventures with sustainable business models using market-based approaches that need access to patient capital in order to achieve scale.
  4. Impact: A measurable strategy for driving educational outcomes and economic mobility for students from underserved backgrounds and markets; a commitment to sharing lessons learned with the greater education sector.
  5. Diversity: Intentionality around building a diverse and inclusive body of leadership.

Meet Our Partners

Featured Story

Jeff Ochs, Founding CEO of Venn Foundation

As a self-described “experiential learner,” Jeff Ochs says he learns best by doing—applying himself to new tasks and gaining expertise as he goes. His method is working.

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