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‘Social enterprises go bust all the time’ – how the sector is tackling its image problem

The appetite for companies with a social purpose has never been greater. But they still face wariness from the wider business community When Emily Mathieson set up her homeware business Aerende in 2016, she didn’t know it would be a social enterprise. She hadn’t even heard the term before. Aerende’s products are made by people who face social challenges, including survivors of trafficking and people with learning disabilities. “I wanted to set up a business doing what I wanted to do, and I wanted to make sure it wasn’t going to have a negative effect on the world,” she says. “So I sort of fell into social enterprise.” Fast forward 18 months and, despite a number of big wins and 400% growth year-on-year, Mathieson isn’t sure it’s a sustainable business model. Continue reading…

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