What is a B Corp?
Certified B Corporations are a new type of business that use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. There are more than 900 certified B Corporations internationally across 60 different industries in about 30 countries (predominantly in the US where the community has its origins). B Corps are a diverse community with one unifying goal: to redefine success in business.
B Corps are certified by the non-profit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, staff engagement and transparency. You could say that B Corp certification is to sustainable business what Fair Trade certification is to the food and drink industry.
Why become a B Corp?
As you will know, Australian Ethical is driven to redefine how people invest their money – not just for financial gain, but for the good of society and the environment. We look to achieve this in the way we invest your money in positive and growing industries like clean energy, sustainable products, technology and healthcare but also in how we conduct ourselves as a business. Australian Ethical is 100 percent carbon neutral and while we are a profitable publicly traded company on the Australian Stock Exchange, we invest 10 per cent of our profits every year back into the community via our grants program.
Australian Ethical is helping to develop the next wave of ethical enterprises not just via its investment funds but by supporting communities like B Corps, partnering with social and environmental groups and rewarding success by establishing the Ethical Enterprise Awards.
We have a deeply held belief that the conscious movement of money can make a positive impact in the world, for all. Business, and especially the investment industry, has incredible power but it must be channelled in the right direction. The value of a business should not only be determined by profit and assets, but by its relationships with communities and staff, caring for the environment, and a culture of supporting the needs of customers. The B Corp movement represents all that Australian Ethical values.
We came across the B Corp movement about 12 months ago when researching similar movements, like Conscious Capitalism. At the same time our friends at social enterprise and impact investor Small Giants suggested Australian Ethical would be the ideal candidate. As part of the global B Corp community, we are now more excited than ever about promoting better business for a better world.
What’s coming up?
We are looking forward to helping to grow the B Corp community in Australia. We will be doing our bit by encouraging our business clients, partners and suppliers to become B Corps and assisting them on the journey. Ultimately, the vision of the movement is that B Corps will be able to do business with each, helping them to grow their business and amplify the positive influence good businesses are having on society and the environment.
There are many extraordinary businesses doing inspirational work for the good of everyone. We are keen to meet, support and invest in those types of businesses and help build a powerful and positive movement in Australia.
To find out more about B Corporations, visit http://www.bcorporation.net.
B Corp Australia will launch later in 2014.