We are delighted to start 2018 by announcing that Investing for Good recently earned B Corp status and has joined the community of over 2,000 existing B Corporations in more than 50 countries.
What is a Certified B Corp?
B Corps are companies meeting high standards of overall social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability and aspiring to use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. They do not aim at becoming the Best in the World but the Best for the World®. B Corps are certified by the non-profit B Lab.
B Corp™ is…
A certification: like fair trade or organic, but for the whole company.
An approach: a better way to do business -- better for workers, communities, the environment
A community: a community of practice to increase our individual and collective impact
A movement: Leaders of a global movement of people using business as a force for good™
What does becoming a B Corp mean to us?
“Investing for Good”. Yes, our purpose-driven mission is quite explicit in our name. Our legal status as a “community interest company” (CIC) also testifies that we are a social enterprise. Why becoming a B Corporation then? Wasn’t it convincing enough?
The legal status and the B Corp Certification are complementary for us. The CIC status is a legal form that supports our work in pursuing socially and environmentally driven goals in addition to financial profit. It also offers some guarantees to ensure there is no mission drift (for instance an asset lock, restriction on dividend).
The B Corp certification is a very different story. Being a B Corp™ means to us:
Being part of a community and a movement
We are happy to join this community of organisations that share with us common values and goals. As some of our partners and clients are B Corps, we feel now part of the same B Corp family! We are a small team and it is important for us to be surrounded by other purpose-driven organisations, this is also why we share our offices with other organisations committed in social or environmental impact!
We are also proud to be part of a growing global movement of people using business as a force for good and we believe that this collective voice is another way of making change happen.
Being assessed by a third party and recognized for our social performance
As a certified social impact auditor, it was an interesting and important experience to jump into our clients’ shoes and play the game of an external evaluation, too. As we give recommendations to other organisations on how they should improve their social commitment, we need to set an example to be credible, and a third-party assessment gives us this credibility.
As all B Corps, obviously we did not wait for B Lab’s certification to take action towards better social responsibility as it is in our DNA. Since our creation in 2004, we have sought constant improvement of our impact, by allocating greater resource to areas where our work confers positive impact but also by tackling our weaknesses and cutting back on activities that are not consistent with our own theory of change. This led us to strategic changes: one year ago for example, we established a new independent board and recruited external non-executives who come from within and outside of the impact investment sector.
The certification process, however, offered us a great opportunity to be challenged! And it is not over: we have an appointment with B Lab® in 2 years to ensure we can still be considered as B Corp™ and to see how we improved our certification score>
“Be the change that you wish to see in the world”, said Gandhi.
Like us, in 2018, B the change and join the community!
More information on B Corp™