Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund
Board facilitation and engagement
Beyond the Startup: Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund
The Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund (SV2) pioneered the model of a “Venture Philanthropy” partnership, pooling Partners’ giving capital to support the Bay Area’s most innovative nonprofits. Alongside their financial support, SV2 Partners have contributed their time and expertise to Grantee organizations, while cultivating a rich learning environment for emerging community leaders. As SV2 approached its milestone 15th anniversary, its growing resume of influential Grantees and broader social benefit revealed a maturing organization.
SV2’s work had grown beyond its startup origins and called for new plans, systems and scale that would carry it into a new season of relevance and impact.
SV2 board and staff began a planning process that would engage the many accomplished entrepreneurial and nonprofit leaders among its 230 Partners. To leverage its in-house experience in planning and development, SV2 engaged Open Impact to design and facilitate its six month planning initiative.
The project began with an environmental scan phase to document best practices and new developments in the field, setting the key variables and boundaries for a new strategic plan. The Open Impact team designed scenario planning sessions to develop and expand the most promising ideas. A working group of SV2 board members explored options and tradeoffs on topics including: SV2’s mission and vision, partnership expansion and culture, piloting innovative programs, and scaling “beyond the dollars” consulting support for Grantees. In addition to facilitating the steps in this planning process, Open Impact built financial models to support various scenarios, helped SV2 understand the full costs of various lines of programming, and generated the business model that accompanied the finished plan.
The approved plan set a blueprint that has guided SV2’s next phase, underscoring its commitment to Grantee impact and expanding through pilot programs in impact investing and international service learning.