Rewilding Europe Capital

Rewilding Europe Capital

Supporting transformation of rural economies

What is Rewilding Europe Capital?

Rewilding Europe Capital (REC) is Europe’s first ‘rewilding enterprise’ funding facility that provides financial loans to new and existing business that catalyse, support and achieve positive environmental and socio-economic outcomes that support rewilding in Europe.

Rewilding Europe Capital works to demonstrate that rewilding creates thriving wildlife and nature focused rural economies that generate new business opportunities, jobs and income for society.

These vibrant socio-economies are replacing diminishing rural landscapes in Europe where declining economic productivity connected to historic agrarian use are now dominated by dynamic and contemporary wildlife and wilderness based businesses pioneering alternative and competitive forms of land and water use that work to support, promote and incentivise natural capital conservation and rewilding.

Leveraging positive change

Rewilding Europe Capital forms part of the enterprise component of Rewilding Europe, which is working to build a business case for wild nature in Europe. REC 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 there is virtually no consciousness around the potential for commercial enterprise actively engaging with and supporting the conservation and rewilding of natural landscapes.

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.

Positive momentum

REC has raised €6.5 million of principal funding and already committed €520,000 of loans which are currently performing positively and where key management and risk mitigation efficiencies have been honed.

Clear vision

The investment team has a clear strategy for REC to generate both economic and impact returns stimulating new rewilding based rural economies.

Strategy

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.

“The efforts of Rewilding Europe Capital so far have shown that it is possible to make a profit and benefit nature at the same time.”

Matthew McLuckie
Investment 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.

124

enterprises supported

43

companies dedicated training

18

REC loans provided

520,000

euros in loans

16

offerings in the European Safari Company

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 is limited to issuing debt finance only with a minimum lending interest rate of 5%.

Investment size

REC typically targets loans ranging from €100,000 to €600,000. Loans under €100,000 may also be considered.

Co-funding

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 to these 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 REC Investment Manager Matthew McLuckie.

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