Presentation on theme: "Www.socialfirmsuk.co.uk Introducing Social Firms."— Presentation transcript:
Introducing Social Firms
The Wider Context Social Firms are one type of Social Enterprise. All social enterprises are trading organisations with social and economic goals. Social enterprises are ‘more-than-profit’ organisations.
Social Firms - History Origins -1960’s in Italy and Germany. European networking growing since 1980’s and CEFEC (Confederation of European Social Firms Employment Initiatives and Social Co-operatives) formed in Social Firms UK founded in 1999.
Social Firms Social Firms have 3 core values: Enterprise ~ Employment~ Empowerment
Enterprise in Social Firms Businesses that trade Earn >50% of income through sales Must have an appropriate legal form Profits are (principally) re-invested to grow the enterprise
Employment in Social Firms At least 25% of employees have a severe disadvantage All staff have employment contracts Market wages are paid Volunteer agreements in place
Empowerment in Social Firms (1) Maximising ability and potential Assisted to manage stress Staff confidentiality Social and economic integration
Empowerment in Social Firms (2) Emphasis on training and employee development Acknowledged as a good employer Organisational structure is enabling
Social Firms UK A charity promoting the development of Social Firms. Is a member organisation: Social Firms and Emerging Social Firms are Full members. Others have Associate, Group, Corporate, Network or Individual membership.
Social Firms Growth - businesses When Social Firms UK was founded I n 1999 there were 6 Social Firms. We know of: Over 180 businesses in the Social Firm sector - 99 Social Firms and 82 emerging Social Firms The estimated number of FTE jobs created is 1,900. Around 1000 of these are held by severely disadvantaged employees
Social Firms Growth - businesses Catering, Recycling, Training (as a market product) and Horticulture are the most popular sectors. Catering and Horticulture are easy to start but competition is high and seasonality in horticulture has implications for job stability.
Some Social Firm Examples Travel agency: Travel Matters Enterprises Health food retail outlet – Daily Bread (Cambridge) Contract gardening and nursery - Solstice Nurseries Caterers Catering2Order –www.catering2order.comwww.catering2order.com To see more Social Firms and trade with them go to:
Social Firm Features Tend to be small organisations Niche markets - product or contract Need ongoing support in early years Make use of external expertise (business and product) Initially led by an entrepreneurial spirit (Social Entrepreneur) Ideally external and independent of parent organisation
A Social Firm Is: A sustainable business supplying a quality service/product A supportive environment (not a care delivery service) Risky/Challenging A long term commitment (3-5 years start-up typically) Costly (in time, energy and money)
A Social Firm should be: A quality working environment An opportunity to maximise potential A model of best employment practice Part of a spectrum of other training & employment related services
A Social Firm Is NOT: A quick fix answer to all problems Easy Going to create lots of jobs in a short time A training project or sheltered workshop Day care on the cheap
Finally : With: the right business idea the right people sound financial support hard work the possibilities for success are good. Business failure rate is 10 times lower among Social Firms in UK and Europe than the small business sector as a whole.