I came across the idea of B Corp a few years back through my involvement with the North East Initiative on Business Ethics (NIBE). If you know about these things there is an obvious parallel.
As with many business ideas, it started in the USA. The B stands for benefit and a benefit corporation is a type of for-profit corporate entity that includes positive impact on society, workers, the community and the environment in addition to profit as its legally defined goals. B Corps are now a global phenomenon with over 5000 such businesses around the world including, of course, the UK.
When an invite dropped into my mailbox for a B Corp social in Newcastle, my interest was well and truly piqued and so it was that I found myself at Revolución de Cuba on Thursday afternoon. Having never been there before and, perhaps not being my thing anymore, I had to walk up and down the Cloth Market a few times before finding where I needed to be.
Up on the terrace Mandy and the team from Sail Creative had gathered an impressive crowd for the first social in the region. Apparently she was not allowed to call it a meetup as there are not enough B Corps in the region yet. That won’t be the situation for long.
There were a few low tech presentations from Mandy herself, Graeme from Robson Laidler (a B Corp and also involved with NIBE) as well as what B Corp is and entails. From these I found out that CICs cannot be B Corps and so this is a route that I won;t be going down. It is still of interest however.
What was great about the event though was the ability to meet up with people again. I met up with half a dozen people who I had only ever met online, rekindling friendships and making new ones. I’m looking forward to the next event.
You can find out more here about B Corp.