Two South Australian companies are amongst the first to be accredited as businesses that make the world a better place.
The companies, Ecocreative and Vital Consult, are the first South Australian companies to be list with B Corporation, a global initiative aiming to harness the power of business to make the world a better place.
Launched in Australia in September, B Corporation Australia and New Zealand is part of a US not-for-profit providing certification for businesses that meet strict standards of social and environmental performance.
The ‘B’ is for benefit, a reference to a relatively recent emergence of benefit corporations in the US – a trend backed by legislation in 24 states.
Although such legislation doesn’t yet exist in Australia, B Corp certification provides a framework of accountability and transparency to businesses that strive for positive change.
Adelaide creative consultancy Ecocreative spent six months working towards its B Corp status.
“Achieving B Corp certification is an exacting and thorough process,” says Ecocreative CEO Matthew Wright-Simon. “We’ve had to closely examine every aspect of our operation – from equity, diversity and environmental management, to how local our suppliers are. And we can’t forget that we’re a business – the concept of sustainability very much includes profitability and viability over the long term.”
He said business owners talk a lot about business development but he’d like to see this as benefit development.
“What’s good for everyone else has got to be good for us,” he said.
Alison Sentence, the managing director of Vital Consult, said her business consultancy benefits from being in a group of like-minded people.
“It is amazing how many people I speak to who are starting to hear of B Corp Australia and are talking positively about the accreditation and what it stands for,” she said. “It is what separates me from other business consultancies, allowing Vital Consult to be a leader in this space.”
Globally there are more than 1100 B Corps across 60 industries in 34 countries, with 42 founding B Corps certified in Australia. More than 500 Australian businesses are among the 17,000 undergoing the certification process worldwide.