A big fat hug for social enterprises - and more financial support too!

Luckily - at least as far as we're concerned - small businesses are for the most sparkling examples of the way good business can be done: caring for customers, behaving themselves, and growing steadily but surely. Our Smarta 100 winners all go to prove that.

At the pinnacle of responsible business practise come social enterprises, which are forging a new way in the world of commerce - proving that profit can be put to good, and that business growth can truly benefit those most in need. (Social enterprises are businesses that exist to support charitable, environmental or social causes.)

There are some 62,000 social enterprises in the UK drawing both financial and social returns. They employ 800,000 people and add £24 billion to the UK economy - not to mention the immeasurable benefits they provide to good causes.

Next time you hear someone moaning about how warped business has become in recent years, refer them to the work of social enterprises.

With that in mind, it makes us very happy to hear that our partner RBS yesterday launched Inspiring Social Enterprise, a three-year commitment to help more social enterprises gain access to bank finance. By the end of 2015, the bank will have supported 2,500 social enterprises, working with them to provide access to expertise, markets and finance.

RBS has renewed its Founding Partner status with Social Enterprise UK, and social enterprises can apply for a Community Business Loan with the bank.

Want to know more about starting and running a social enterprise? Try our advice on:

Image: spakattacks

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