Pymwymic 1.0 – 1995
In 1995, a core group of SVN members and investors decided to invest in companies that had environmental or social purpose – and so began Europe’s first ever, social venture capital fund. Pymwymic’s original 30 shareholders include some of the most famous names in European social venture start-up, including Eckart Wintzen (Origin) Jan Oosterwijk (The Body Shop) Frank van Beuningen (originally GAASTRA and now for 18 years Pymwymic) and Jan Willem Nieuwenhuys (ASN Vermogensbeheer). Pymwymic’s 1.0 most enjoyable investment was in bringing Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream to the Benelux. The shareholders of Pymwymic invested in what was then unknown but visionary technology: solar, wind, wave, lithium batteries, biotechnology, ethical waste management and recyclable plastic. All funds were invested by 2001, and in 2004 shareholders decided to wind down this early model. Of the eight early companies, two are still active, three had excellent exits, and three created significant social impact but were financial write-offs. (We call those three ‘involuntary philanthropy’).
Pymwymic 2.0 – from 2002 through 2008
Rather than be confined by a fund, investor Frank van Beuningen continues Pymwymic as a peer investor community, matching good deals with people he knew would be interested in taking a risk to improve the world. The group around Pymwymic grows to about 150 investors, and they together fund 22 additional companies.
Pymwymic 3.0 – from 2008 through NOW.
Pymwymic is now a peer investor community of about 350 active investors, and more than 5000+ ‘friends of.’ We continue to scout and screen hundreds of deals, and put our own money into each Pymwymic portfolio investment. In 2008 we also launched our ‘Events’ division, to host and convene for the growing movement of ‘Impact Investing.’ 2013 sees the launch of newly formed Pymwymic Group BV as umbrella-holding for the Membership Club and other products offered, and newly constituted Stichting (Foundation) Pymwymic, to guard the core intent and purpose of our work and continue to hold the Group BV accountable to the mission.