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The Rise of Social Enterprises

The Rise of Social Enterprises

The Rise of Social Enterprises

There’s no doubt that the Social Enterprise movement is on the rise. The term started being more widely used in the 1990s when there was a resurgence of businesses whose priority was to bring about social and environmental change, and the movement has continued to go from strength to strength.

So what is a Social Enterprise?

There has been much debate over the definition of a Social Enterprise in the last 20 years. They are essentially businesses with a difference. That difference being that the priority of these organisations isn’t to make a profit for the owner or shareholders, but to donate or reinvest to bring about positive social or environmental change. Put simply, they are somewhere between a business and a charity.

Who are they?

You may think you are not familiar with social enterprises but they are increasingly recognisable: The Big Issue, Comic Relief and the Co-op supermarket chain are just a few of the more well known big names.

How do they work?

These enterprises want to change the world for the better. They operate through trade – by selling goods and services in the open market. It’s how they use the money they make that makes them different. According to Social Enterprise UK, ‘the majority (more than 50%) of an organisation’s profits should be reinvested to further its social or environmental mission.’ This reinvestment allows them to make a difference – to tackle social problems and improve people’s lives and the environment, and ultimately, benefits society.

The rise and popularity of Social Enterprises

Social Enterprises have been on the rise for the last 30 years. These businesses bring a fresh perspective: the current ‘post millennial Generation Z’ aren’t only interested in profits and cash – they are looking for something else, something more meaningful and looking at the bigger picture. They want to make a difference and give something back to the community, and indeed world, they live in.

Social Enterprises are at the forefront of our economy and their impact on the UK’s economic growth cannot be underestimated. If you would like to know more about them, you can visit the National Body for Social Enterprise for more information. A growing number of our clients here at Take One TV are social enterprises and we are finding them inspirational to work with and enjoy helping them to add value back to the community around us.


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