What is a social enterprise?

A social enterprise is similar to a ‘normal’ enterprise, as it provides a product or service and has a revenue model. However, making money is not their ultimate goal, but a means to achieve their real mission, which is the creation of social impact.

Social enterprises are active in various sectors and create a great deal of social value for both society and the environment. This is a new way of entrepreneurship which is very dynamic and growing rapidly.

PwC uses the following definition of Social Enterprise NL:

A social enterprise:

  1. Primarily has a social mission: social impact first
  2. Realizes that mission as an independent enterprise that provides a service or a product
  3. Is financially self-sustaining, based on trade or other forms of value exchange, and therefore has limited or no subsidy or donation dependence
  4. Is managed in a socially responsible way. That means the company:
    • Can make a profit, but the financial goals are only a means to support  the mission: social impact first. Profit-taking by possible shareholders is reasonable.
    • Has a governance and company policy in place that are based on balanced control of all stakeholders.
    • Is fair to all stakeholders.
    • Is aware of its ecological footprint.
    • Is transparent.

Does your social enterprise meet these criteria and do you want to take the next step with your social enterprise? Apply now!

Contact us

Sanne Visser

Corporate Responsibility | Social enterprises, PwC Netherlands

Tel: +31 (0)88 792 44 84

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