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Finance

Everybody is an Investor

The Ujima Fund

The Nation's first Democratic Investment Fund

The Ujima Fund is a democratic investment vehicle raising capital to finance small businesses, real estate and infrastructure projects in Boston’s working-class Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color, as part of the larger Boston Ujima Project. Ujima, named for the Swahili word for collective work and responsibility, uses a participatory budgeting process in combination with traditional underwriting to put economic development decisions in the hands of community members. 

INVEST IN UJIMA

INVEST IN THE UJIMA FUND

HELP SUSTAIN UJIMA

After years of co-creation with community members, businesses, grassroots partners, and supporters, we have reached our investment capital goal of raising $4.5MM. 

 

The Ujima Fund has disabled investments as we have met our deployment capital goal! You can still support the Ujima Fund by donating to the Imani Pool below.

As a non profit fund, the Ujima Fund relies on your support to sustain the team and infrastructure that make this work possible. 

FUND STRUCTURE

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Fund Structure
Accredited

ACCREDITED INVESTOR

An accredited investor is a person or a business entity who is allowed to deal in securities that may not be registered with financial authorities. They are entitled to this access if they satisfy one (or more) requirements regarding income, net worth, asset size, governance status or professional experience. Accredited investors include natural high net worth individuals, banks, insurance companies, brokers and trusts. As determined by the Securities & Exchange Commission's Regulation D, an accredited investor includes anyone who: has an earned income that exceeded $200,000 (or $300,000 together with a spouse) in each of the prior two years, and reasonably expects the same for the current year, OR has a net worth over $1 million, either alone or together with a spouse (excluding the value of the person’s primary residence).

NON-ACCREDITED INVESTOR

A non-accredited investor is someone who does not meet the net worth requirements for an accredited investor under the Securities & Exchange Commission's Regulation D. A non-accredited individual investor is one who has a net worth of less than $1 million (including spouse) and who earned less than $200,000 annually ($300,000 with spouse) in the last two years. 

VS

INVESTMENT DEMOCRACY

With our grassroots partner organiza-tions, Ujima hosts neighborhood and city-wide planning assemblies with hundreds of residents, local business-es and employees to set investment priorities and vote on investments that help achieve shared community goals. Local finance professionals and Ujima Members comprise the Ujima Fund’s Investment Committee (IC), which conducts due diligence and makes rec-ommendations to members before all investments come to a vote.

EQUITABLE RETURNS

Normally, higher risk capital is compensated with higher returns, but we think about risk more broadly. For a working class investor, investing $100 may be higher risk than a wealthy investor investing $10,000. Ujima will leverage philanthropic dollars to secure the investments of working class investors and support reasonable returns for other investors seeking radical impact with their investments. 

COMMUNITY ECONOMICS

Ujimaʼs participatory multi stakeholder model unlocks new ways to mitigate investment risk and grow portfolio resilience. Ujima activates its base of community investors, organizers and business professionals to channel consumer dollars to community-oriented businesses, support those businesses with hands-on technical assistance, secure purchasing contracts with local anchor institutions, and support policy campaigns for a more just economy.

WHAT WE'VE LEARNED

Assembly of Black Possibilities
October 2023

The 2023 Assembly of Black Possibilities celebrated the ways individuals and communities are mobilizing to take back our neighborhoods, towns, and cities to create sites of liberation, resistance care, and refusal. Check out more here.

Neighborhood & Citywide Assemblies
SEPTEMBER 2017 - OCTOBER 2018 

From September 2017 through October 2018, Ujima partnered with grassroots organizations to hold 2 Citywide Assemblies and 3 Neighborhood Assemblies in Fields Corner, the Blue Hill Corridor, and Dudley Square.  These assemblies brought over 550 residents together to collectively determine the values and priorities for the

Ujima Fund.  

Pilot Investment Day
AUGUST 2017

In August 2016, hundreds of community members gathered in Roxbury for Ujima's Solidarity Summit.  Through the Pilot Investment day, 175 people invested $20,000  democratically to 5 Black & immigrant owned businesses with 0% interest loans.