The Three Models of Social Enterprises

Creating social impact through trading activities: Part 1

Within the emerging social investment market, the same words frequently mean different things to different people. In particular, the label ‘social enterprise’ can be especially problematic. In part, this is because there is no shared understanding of the underlying business models beneath the ‘social enterprise’ umbrella. For investors, as the number of organisations labelled as ‘social enterprises’ proliferates, it is becoming increasingly urgent to agree, and then to adopt, a common methodology for disentangling the assessment of financial risk from the likelihood of an investment achieving social returns.

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