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Between Social Values and Profitable Performance: The Case of B-Corporations

Between Social Values and Profitable Performance: The Case of B-Corporations

Objective

How entrepreneurs could profit from social responsible investments? This issue implies a balance between entrepreneurs’ investments in profitable business models and their engagement in non-profit social actions. To address this question, the project studies the B-Corporations as a new legal business form of corporations (private and public) pursuing benefits for society and shareholders. A non-profit certifying organization, B-Lab, analyses the impact of these companies on society, with particular attention to their ability to provide to ‘communities’ beneficial products or services. Although first established in US, now they are present in 34 countries across 121 industries. Employing this legal form of social companies, the proposal exploits the notion of community-focused strategies (CFS) to refer to the actions that entrepreneurs should pursue to establish links with communities to fulfill reciprocal social values. If people join communities to satisfy their identity needs, entrepreneurs might seek to align their ventures’ strategy to them to improve entrepreneurial performance. Building on social identity theory, entrepreneurial and strategy research, this project adopt mainly a demand-oriented approach. First, it tries to explain differences in new ventures’ performance investigating how B-Corps interact with their communities and through them access customers’ information and gaining loyalty. Second, it explores and profiles the B-Corps as new examples of social entrepreneurial ventures. Finally, it studies entrepreneurs’ strategies to develop long-term interactions with the communities. The statistical evidence is drawn from secondary data, surveys to entrepreneurs, and lab experiments. Implications on ventures’ success rate, growth and drawbacks of the interplay between social entrepreneurship and CFS are discussed.
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Coordinator

IE UNIVERSIDAD

Address

Calle Cardenal Zuniga 12
40003 Segovia

Spain

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 158 121,60

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 655676

Status

Closed project

  • Start date

    1 June 2016

  • End date

    31 May 2018

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.3.2.

  • Overall budget:

    € 158 121,60

  • EU contribution

    € 158 121,60

Coordinated by:

IE UNIVERSIDAD

Spain