Rewilding Europe Capital

Vlad Braga

Rewilding Europe Capital

Supporting transformation of rural economies

Giancarlo Gallinoro / Rewilding Apennines

What is Rewilding Europe Capital?

Rewilding Europe Capital (REC) is an investment tool with the goal to scale up rewilding impact, develop a nature-based economies and pilot new business models around rewilding landscapes.

Rewilding Europe hopes to demonstrate that the restoration of ecosystems in rural regions can be a viable way for economic development, able to generate new business opportunities, jobs and income for local communities.

REC provides commercial loans for small businesses that are part of the ERN or located around rewilding landscapes to expand or launch their activities. Businesses that have received funding in the past include a wide range of initiatives from ecotourism companies, to pioneering business models to recover landscapes. REC bridges funding gaps between restoration actions and finance availability.

Nelleke de Weerd

Leveraging positive change

Rewilding Europe Capital is working to build a business case for wild nature in Europe and was established to positively stimulate enterprise economies connected to natural landscapes and their wildlife. REC achieves this by providing commercial business loans to businesses that can:

  • Positively address negative socio-economic impacts caused by rural land abandonment;
  • Directly and indirectly support rewilding processes and activities in Europe;
  • Deliver economic returns from nature and wildlife related sectors that also work to conserve natural landscapes, capital and rural cultures and heritage connected to them.

Why Rewilding Europe Capital?

In Europe, consciousness for new economic opportunities that can arise from restoring natural landscapes is increasing but is still relatively unknown.

In rural areas where the commercial value of natural capital is poorly understood, access to commercial development finance for enterprises working with nature is virtually non-existent.

Nature-based enterprises remain thinly represented – despite the significant natural values across Europe and the ‘wildlife comeback’ now occurring. There are new and distinct enterprise opportunities connected to rewilding.

With its accessibility, security and close access to markets, Europe provides a significant scope to sustain rewilding enterprise markets. These can make a meaningful difference to our natural environment and those relying on it.

Our comparative advantage

Relevant experience

The REC investment team has unparalleled practical transaction experience in developing and investing in conservation / rewilding enterprises in relevant natural contexts in Europe and further afield. Local Enterprise Officers are further providing guidance, advice and support in the creation, or expansion of new nature based enterprises.

Clear vision

The investment team has a clear strategy for REC to generate both economic and impact returns stimulating a new economy based around wilder nature.


REC is embedded as a core component within Rewilding Europe, which is a well-established, European-wide conservation initiative that has a clear development strategy, established processes, a strong core objective and theory of change.

Support network

REC has open access to the full resources of the Rewilding Europe initiative both in skill specific expertise and dedicated in-country ‘on-the-ground’ resources.

“Creating and supporting Nature-based Economies is key to gain social and economic support for rewilding, REC is an important tool to achieve this goal.”

Daniel Veríssimo
Enterprise Manager for Rewilding Europe Capital

How does Rewilding Europe Capital work?

Criteria for ‘rewilding enterprise’ and REC investment

Rewilding Europe Capital provides loans to ‘rewilding enterprises’ defined as ‘any commercial activity or businesses that generates economic or social benefits in ways that support and achieve the generation of both rewilding outcomes and natural rewilding impacts’.

To qualify as a ‘rewilding enterprise’, a business must be generating or being capable of generating in the short-medium term at least one of the following rewilding outcomes and demonstrate how these could contribute towards:

Generating Finance

Up-front capital or on-going operating finance (or both) that can support a rewilding area or initiative.

Building Incentives

Demonstrating and increasing the economic benefits derived from wildlife and wild nature to relevant stakeholders (landowners, local communities, public authorities) that incentivises them to conserve it and to rewild.

Optimising Sustainability

Reshaping commercial activities that threaten nature towards alternatives that promote and/or support rewilding.

Optimising Buffer Zones

Increasing the economic productivity of ‘buffer’ landscapes to create and incentivise more competitive natural land uses that support rewilding in core areas

Stimulating Engagement

Enabling direct access to or enjoyment of nature in manners, which fosters the engagement of wider constituencies in its conservation or rewilding.


enterprises supported by central team and local enterprise officers


companies dedicated training


REC loans provided


euros in loans


offerings in Rewilding Europe Travel

Sector focus

REC does not have any sector restrictions, however will give preference and actively seek investments in the following sectors (click to download factsheets):

Forest management
Nature and wildlife tourism
Wetland restoration and water management
Biodiversity and CO2 offsetting
Land estates
Wildlife breeding and management

Funding structure

REC can be flexible on the level of interest rate depending on the type of business.

Investment size

REC typically targets loans ranging under €75.000.


All beneficiaries of REC funding are required to co-finance a minimum of 25% of the REC loan principal.


Geographic focus

Rewilding Europe Capital is able to provide finance to rewilding enterprises incorporated in any EU-28 member country.

All applicants and beneficiaries of REC funding must operate within a member European Rewilding Network site or initiative. REC uses ‘best efforts’ to concentrate investments within existing rewilding areas.


Rewilding levies

All investees will be contractually required to contribute rewilding levies towards financing rewilding activities capable of generating rewilding impacts. These activities will be set out in the REC loan agreements together with the distribution process.

Rewilding levies are cash balances retained by investees either from top line income or as a type of royalty, which are granted directly by the investee towards supporting a rewilding activity.


Contact us for more information

REC is interested in partnering with and investing in both new and existing enterprises that can support rewilding in Europe. We not only provide investment, but we can also provide wider support for rewilding enterprises. For example by helping businesses to align their operations towards rewilding and, for those that do this well, by also making use of Rewilding Europe’s very powerful and far-reaching communications platforms for promotion.

REC is also interested in co-investment from and partnerships with funding or financing institutions and individuals to support rewilding enterprises in Europe.

If you own or know of a business that you believe can be developed in partnership with REC; or if you would like any further information please contact Daniel Veríssimo.

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