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New Funds Launched To Tackle Climate Crisis And Serve Women At Risk Of Homelessness After Domestic Abuse


Two new real estate funds have been launched that aim to make money at the same time as doing good for society.

BNP Paribas Real Estate Investment Management launched a vehicle to reduce real estate carbon emissions, and Patron Capital has created a fund to provide secure accommodation for women experiencing or at risk of homelessness, often as a result of having to flee domestic violence.

BNP Paribas has launched what it says will be the first real estate fund compliant with the 2015 Paris Agreement to cut global carbon emissions in order to reduce global warming. 

The European Impact Property Fund has an initial equity commitment of €160M (£146M) and will look to grow that to €1B over the next two years. 

It will look to buy existing buildings across Europe in all real estate sectors and then reduce their carbon emissions by at least 40% over the next 10 years. The fund will have a detailed reporting system in place to measure the impact and progress of its strategy.

In the UK, real estate private equity firm Patron has completed a first closing for its Women in Safe Homes Fund, which it said is the world’s first gender-lens property fund. 

It has raised £15.5M from a group of investors including Big Society Capital, Patron Managing Director Keith Breslauer and U.S. investors the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Lostand Foundation.

Patron is partnering with specialist social impact investor Resonance, and the pair aim to grow the fund’s equity base to £100M. 

The fund aims to provide around 650 affordable homes across the UK, which it will start buying in January. 

It will purchase properties and lease them to women’s sector organisations and homelessness charities which, in turn, will rent homes to women at risk of homelessness, with a secure tenancy. 

Initial charity partners Preston Road Women’s Centre and Refuge will provide specialist and housing support to help women recover from abusive or difficult circumstances and Nacro will house women under its Bail, Accommodation and Support Service, enabling women to find stability and rebuild their lives and help them to sustain their tenancies.