Initiative Ireland has announced that its clients have committed €1.35 million to finance the construction of a new social housing project and training centre in Dublin’s City Centre.
Co-funded by the company’s impact investor community of Irish businesses and private investors, the project will provide 9 additional social housing apartments and a training centre for The Paddy McGrath Housing Project, to be developed by McGrath Talbot Developments.
The Paddy McGrath Housing Project (originally The Aids Fund) was founded in 1987 by Fr Paddy McGrath. Since 1994 the fund has provided housing and care support for those living with HIV and AIDS.
Initiative Ireland was founded in 2015 by an experienced financial services team, with the goal of building an online community of impact investors who would co-fund the construction of social, affordable and mid-market housing projects nationwide.
To date the company has provided over €20 million in funding to eligible projects, by way of senior secured loans, delivering much needed housing to the market nationwide.
Initiative Ireland, which is headquartered at NovaUCD, the Centre for New Ventures and Entrepreneurs at University College Dublin, is supported by Enterprise Ireland as a high-potential start-up.
Padraig W. Rushe, CEO, Initiative Ireland said, “Domestic demand for housing in Ireland exceeds 35,000 new homes each year, Ireland is grappling with a housing shortage crisis following a decade of under supply of social, affordable and mid-market housing. The country experienced a 48% supply shortfall last year based on supply volume.”
He added: “The true housing shortfall is understated, due to a mismatch in the affordability of supply, with many Irish families locked-out of the market due to a lack of new affordable housing stock. Dublin rents have increased 200% since 2011, due to a lack of new supply of rental accommodation and affordable housing alternatives.
“As of May 2019, there were 70,000 households on the social housing waiting list of which 10,000 families were living in emergency accommodation. At Initiative Ireland, we are supporting smaller developments, providing a good return for our clients while also helping to deliver much needed social impact.”
Don O’Higgins, CEO, The Paddy McGrath Housing Project, said, “We welcome the opportunity to work with Initiative Ireland. Their support along with the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government with Dublin City Council has been instrumental in providing the financing for this project which will deliver new and much needed social housing in the heart of the City for long-term homeless.”
Padraig W. Rushe, concluded, “We established Initiative Ireland to offer honest, fair and inclusive finance. We’ve built an online community of investors who share our values and value the opportunity to help communities and worthy projects like this new development in Dublin City Centre.”
Initiative Ireland has recently been shortlisted for two Irish Pension Awards 2019, the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) or Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) Provider of the Year Award and the Innovation Award.