STARTING A SOCIAL ENTERPRISE?
Please note that our advice helpline is open to SEUK members only. As we are a membership organisation we are unable to offer free advice over the phone to all callers. Our practical guide to starting your social enterprise takes you through the essentials from finding investment and funding to deciding on the most suitable legal structure for your social enterprise.
If you are in need of free business support and advice, please contact Inspire2Enterprise.
Setting up a social enterprise – or changing an organisation from a charity, public sector or private business into a successful social enterprise can be a daunting, exhilarating and challenging experience. Here are some FAQs about social enterprise.
ALREADY UP + RUNNING?
There are several key areas that SEUK provides advice and support for social enterprises that are up and running.
The world of finance and funding can be a daunting prospect. Here is a list of social finance organisations who can help further.
Accurate information about the impact your social enterprise is making towards your social goals is very important. Read more about social impact measurement.
Social Enterprise UK has members large and small, in almost every industry, in all corners of the UK. Find out more about membership benefits.
Bikeworks is a social enterprise with several branches in London, offering a range of services including cycle training, repairs, bike recycling, travel planning and sales of bikes.
Jim Blakemore is co-director and joint founder of Bikeworks, a London-based social enterprise which uses bikes as tools to create social and environmental change at community level. Before the bike scene beckoned, Blakemore spent his early career DJing and promoting club nights across England, squeezing in time to teach people with learning disabilities to DJ in his free time.
The social enterprise now has three retail shops, a bike servicing unit in the basement of Deloitte, three training centres and two disability clubs. Visit a Bikeworks shop and you’ll find top of the range bike parts and mechanics offering repair services as well as refurbished bikes saved from landfill and recycled bike parts, which are also sold on its Online Vintage Bikes and Parts Shop.
Fikay Eco Fashion is a multi-award winning adventure inspired fashion brand with a mission to make a positive impact internationally.
By rethinking traditional supply chains Fikay has found a way everyone can win. They empower widows and disabled adults in developing countries who would otherwise be overlooked through training and micro loans. Each person gets a sewing machine on loan with 0% interest which they pay back over a year while working with us. On the ground partners deliver the micro loans and training because nobody knows the local culture better than local people.
Aaron Jones, a 25-year-old graduate of international enterprise and business development at the University of Essex, started Fikay in 2011 after a gap year in Asia. He spotted bags made from cement sacks and old fish-feed packets – featuring striking tiger, elephant, eagle and cobra designs – for sale at a market in Cambodia, and started researching the supply chain.
After months sourcing and selling test items to friends and family in the UK, Jones decided he had a viable business idea and ploughed in funds from his student overdraft, family and friends.
JOIN SOCIAL ENTERPRISE UK
For a one-off annual membership fee we provide social enterprises with a range of tools including access to training, information and advice, discounted event attendance, PR and comms.
SERVICES WE OFFER TO SOCIAL ENTERPRISES
Consultancy Looking for tailored support? We are able to provide business and comms support from our teams who have an in-depth understanding of the issues around social enterprise
Speakers Book the speaking services of some of the country’s top social enterprise experts and leaders.
Research From social impact measurement to policy analysis SEUK has the expertise to carry out a wide range of research services.