Our Approach


Drive Change

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Who We Support

Propel Capital invests in organizations and people working to reform the criminal justice system, advance progressive issues and elected leadership, and expand economic opportunity through inclusive access to capital. We focus on creative solutions to complex challenges, recognizing that game-changing ideas and exceptional leadership exist across sectors, demographics, and geographies.

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Our Initiatives

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Propel Democracy

We invest in rising leaders and early- and growth-stage organizations with a clear vision and strategy for building progressive power. Organizations within our portfolio are poised to play a critical role in local, state-wide, and national elections in 2018 and beyond, and represent diverse approaches that foster strategic experimentation and collaboration. This work includes creative, tactical approaches to building electoral power now as well as strengthening grassroots organizing and voter engagement capacity to ignite and sustain long-term transformation.

Source: Sister District Project


Propel Justice

We provide catalytic support for organizations committed to ending mass incarceration and reforming the criminal justice system. The fund prioritizes elevating the leadership of system-impacted people, spearheading strategies to hold decision makers – such as judges and elected officials -- accountable, and designing actionable ways the criminal justice system can operate differently right now.

Source: Center for Prison Education


Social Entrepreneurship

We support social enterprises building innovative, scalable solutions to issues of poverty and inequality. At Propel, we believe that those closest to the problem are best able to develop successful solutions and therefore prioritize social entrepreneurs whose lived experiences reflect the challenges they aim to solve.

Source: SHOFCO

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Impact Investing

We employ an integrated capital approach to catalyze broad adoption of business and investment practices that consider social and environmental impact. In the US, we focus on companies that create and support thriving wage jobs and organizations that foster healthy local economies and ecosystems for entrepreneurship.

Source: SOCAP


Partner Spotlight


Root Capital

2 billion people in rural areas across the developing world live on under $2 a day, many of them farming to feed the rest of the world while not getting enough to eat themselves. Without access to capital and viable markets for their crops, millions of small-scale farmers are trapped in a cycle of poverty. Root Capital’s mission is to address this issue by lending capital, delivering financial training, and strengthening market connections for these small agricultural businesses. In pursuit of this mission, the organization has disbursed $1.2B in loans and trained over 1,000 businesses, helping to increase the livelihood of more than 500,000 rural families. Propel has partnered with Root Capital since 2008 and continues to proudly support the organization’s innovative efforts to grow prosperity for rural farmers.

Vera Institute of Justice

For more than 55 years, Vera has worked tirelessly to advance policies and practices that ensure equality in the American justice system. As innovative thought leaders who challenge the status quo and build coalitions, Vera is able to create real and meaningful change in areas of prison reform, immigration rights, and racial & minority justice. Vera’s Restoring Promise Initiative works with corrections agencies, starting with the Connecticut Department of Correction (DOC), to develop an approach for transforming the care and custody of incarcerated young adults nationally.

New Media Ventures

New Media Ventures is the first mission-driven venture fund and investor network supporting media and tech startups that catalyze progressive change. The organization has mobilized over $60M to 60 non-profit and for-profit startups, including four Propel Democracy partners: Sister District Project, which is harnessing resources in deep blue areas to secure strategic progressive wins in state legislatures, Mijente, which is creating a hub for Latinx and Chicano movement-building, Indivisible, which is supporting 6,000+ volunteer-led groups committed to taking action to elect progressive leaders, and Swing Left, which is connecting 300,000+ volunteers with opportunities to support Democratic candidates in their nearest Swing Districts.