Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 6

Social Business Related Abstracts

6 Social Business: Opportunities and Challenges

Authors: Muhammad Mustafizur Rahaman


Social business is a new concept in the field of Business Economics and Capitalist Economy. It has increased the importance in economic and social development in emerging economies. Professor Muhammad Yunus is the founding father of the notion. While conventional business underscores profit maximization as a core business principle, social business calls for addressing social problems at the expense of profit. This underlying principle gives social business advantageous position over conventional businesses to serve those who live at the bottom of the pyramid. It also poses grave challenges to the social business because social business sacrifices profit at one hand and seeks financial sustainability on the other. For the sake of its financial sustainability, the social business might increase the price of its product or service which might lower its social impact, thus, makes the business self-defeating. Therefore, social business should be more innovative in every business process including production, marketing, and management. Otherwise, the business is unlikely to be driven out from the society.

Keywords: Social Business, Innovativeness, self-defeat, social problem

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5 Social Business Models: When Profits and Impacts Are Not at Odds

Authors: Elisa Pautasso, Matteo Castagno, Michele Osella


In the last decade, the emergence of new social needs as an effect of the economic crisis has stimulated the flourishing of business endeavours characterised by explicit social goals. Social start-ups, social enterprises or Corporate Social Responsibility operations carried out by traditional companies are quintessential examples in this regard. This paper analyses these kinds of initiatives in order to discover the main characteristics of social business models and to provide insights to social entrepreneurs for developing or improving their strategies. The research is conducted through the integration of literature review and case study analysis and, thanks to the recognition of the importance of both profits and social impacts as the key success factors for a social business model, proposes a framework for identifying indicators suitable for measuring the social impacts generated.

Keywords: Impacts, Social Business, Case study, Business Model

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4 Partnership Brokering as a Driver of Social Business

Authors: Lani Fraizer, Faiz Shah


Extreme poverty continues to plague the world. Forty-seven million people live well-below the poverty line in Bangladesh, enduring poor quality of life, often with no access to basic human needs like shelter and healthcare. It is not surprising that poverty eradication is central to the mission of social change makers, such as Muhammad Yunus, who have demonstrated how enterprise-led development initiatives empower individuals at the grassroots, and can galvanize entire communities to emerge out of poverty. Such strategies call for system-wide change, and like a number of systems leaders, social business champions have typically challenged the status quo, and broken out of silos to catalyze vibrant multi-stakeholder partnerships across sectors. Apart from individual charisma, social change makers succeed because they garner collaborative impact through socially beneficial partnerships. So while enterprise-led social development evolves in scope and complexity, in step with the need to create and sustain partnerships, Partnership Brokering is emerging as an approach to facilitate collaborative processes. As such, it may now be possible for anyone motivated by the idea of social business to acquire the skills and sophistication necessary for building enriching partnerships that harness the power of the market to address poverty. This paper examines dimensions of partnership brokering in the context of social business, and explores the implications of this emerging approach on fostering poverty eradication.

Keywords: Poverty, social entrepreneurship, Social Business, partnership brokering, systems change, enterprise-led development, change making

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3 Mapping the State of the Art of European Companies Doing Social Business at the Base of the Economic Pyramid as an Advanced Form of Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility

Authors: Claudio Di Benedetto, Irene Bengo


The objective of the paper is to study how large European companies develop social business (SB) at the base of the economic pyramid (BoP). BoP markets are defined as the four billions people living with an annual income below $3,260 in local purchasing power. Despite they are heterogeneous in terms of geographic range they present some common characteristics: the presence of significant unmet (social) needs, high level of informal economy and the so-called ‘poverty penalty’. As a result, most people living at BoP are excluded from the value created by the global market economy. But it is worth noting, that BoP population with an aggregate purchasing power of around $5 trillion a year, represent a huge opportunity for companies that want to enhance their long-term profitability perspective. We suggest that in this context, the development of SB is, for companies, an innovative and promising way to satisfy unmet social needs and to experience new forms of value creation. Indeed, SB can be considered a strategic model to develop CSR programs that fully integrate the social dimension into the business to create economic and social value simultaneously. Despite in literature many studies have been conducted on social business, only few have explicitly analyzed such phenomenon from a company perspective and their role in the development of such initiatives remains understudied with fragmented results. To fill this gap the paper analyzes the key characteristics of the social business initiatives developed by European companies at BoP. The study was performed analyzing 1475 European companies participating in the United Nation Global Compact, the world’s leading corporate social responsibility program. Through the analysis of the corporate websites the study identifies companies that actually do SB at BoP. For SB initiatives identified, information were collected according to a framework adapted from the SB model developed by preliminary results show that more than one hundred European companies have already implemented social businesses at BoP accounting for the 6,5% of the total. This percentage increases to 15% if the focus is on companies with more than 10.440 employees. In terms of geographic distribution 80% of companies doing SB at BoP are located in western and southern Europe. The companies more active in promoting SB belong to financial sector (20%), energy sector (17%) and food and beverage sector (12%). In terms of social needs addressed almost 30% of the companies develop SB to provide access to energy and WASH, 25% of companies develop SB to reduce local unemployment or to promote local entrepreneurship and 21% of companies develop SB to promote financial inclusion of poor. In developing SB companies implement different social business configurations ranging from forms of outsourcing to internal development models. The study identifies seven main configurations through which company develops social business and each configuration present distinguishing characteristics respect to the involvement of the company in the management, the resources provided and the benefits achieved. By performing different analysis on data collected the paper provides detailed insights on how European companies develop SB at BoP.

Keywords: Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Enterprise, Social Business, base of the economic pyramid

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2 Social Enterprise Concept in Sustaining Agro-Industry Development in Indonesia: Case Study of Yourgood Social Business

Authors: Koko Iwan Agus Kurniawan, Dwi Purnomo, Anas Bunyamin, Arif Rahman Jaya


Fruters model is a concept of technopreneurship-based on empowerment, in which technology research results were designed to create high value-added products and implemented as a locomotive of collaborative empowerment; thereby, the impact was widely spread. This model still needs to be inventoried and validated concerning the influenced variables in the business growth process. Model validation accompanied by mapping was required to be applicable to Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) agro-industry based on sustainable social business and existing real cases. This research explained the empowerment model of Yourgood, an SME, which emphasized on empowering the farmers/ breeders in farmers in rural areas, Cipageran, Cimahi, to housewives in urban areas, Bandung, West Java, Indonesia. This research reviewed some works of literature discussing the agro-industrial development associated with the empowerment and social business process and gained a unique business model picture with the social business platform as well. Through the mapped business model, there were several advantages such as technology acquisition, independence, capital generation, good investment growth, strengthening of collaboration, and improvement of social impacts that can be replicated on other businesses. This research used analytical-descriptive research method consisting of qualitative analysis with design thinking approach and that of quantitative with the AHP (Analytical Hierarchy Process). Based on the results, the development of the enterprise’s process was highly affected by supplying farmers with the score of 0.248 out of 1, being the most valuable for the existence of the enterprise. It was followed by university (0.178), supplying farmers (0.153), business actors (0.128), government (0.100), distributor (0.092), techno-preneurship laboratory (0.069), banking (0.033), and Non-Government Organization (NGO) (0.031).

Keywords: Agro-industry, Design Thinking, Social Business, Empowerment, AHP, business model canvas, small medium enterprises

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1 Social Business Model: Leveraging Business and Social Value of Social Enterprises

Authors: Miriam Borchardt, Agata M. Ritter, Macaliston G. da Silva, Mauricio N. de Carvalho, Giancarlo M. Pereira


This paper aims to analyze the barriers faced by social enterprises and based on that to propose a social business model framework that helps them to leverage their businesses and the social value delivered. A business model for social enterprises should amplify the value perception including social value for the beneficiaries while generating enough profit to escalate the business. Most of the social value beneficiaries are people from the base of the economic pyramid (BOP) or the ones that have specific needs. Because of this, products and services should be affordable to consumers while solving social needs of the beneficiaries. Developing products and services with social value require tie relationship among the social enterprises and universities, public institutions, accelerators, and investors. Despite being focused on social value and contributing to the beneficiaries’ quality of life as well as contributing to the governments that cannot properly guarantee public services and infrastructure to the BOP, many barriers are faced by the social enterprises to escalate their businesses. This is a work in process and five micro- and small-sized social enterprises in Brazil have been studied: (i) one has developed a kit for cervical uterine cancer detection to allow the BOP women to collect their own material and deliver to a laboratory for U$1,00; (ii) other has developed special products without lactose and it is about 70% cheaper than the traditional brands in the market; (iii) the third has developed prosthesis and orthosis to surplus needs that health public system have not done efficiently; (iv) the fourth has produced and commercialized menstrual panties aiming to reduce the consumption of dischargeable ones while saving money to the consumers; (v) the fifth develops and commercializes clothes from fabric wastes in a partnership with BOP artisans. The preliminary results indicate that the main barriers are related to the public system to recognize these products as public money that could be saved if they bought products from these enterprises instead of the multinational pharmaceutical companies, to the traditional distribution system (e.g. pharmacies) that avoid these products because of the low or non-existing profit, to the difficulty buying raw material in small quantities, to leverage investment by the investors, to cultural barriers and taboos. Interesting strategies to reduce the costs have been observed: some enterprises have focused on simplifying products, others have invested in partnerships with local producers and have developed their machines focusing on process efficiency to leverage investment by the investors.

Keywords: Social Enterprises, Social Business, Business Model, base of the pyramid, social business model

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