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Can Social Business Lead Real Change in the Social Sector?


20 February 2017 at 4:39 pm
Staff Reporter
Nobel Peace Prize Recipient Professor Muhammad Yunus will be visiting Australia this April for the Australasian Social Business Forum. Credited as the father of microfinance, Professor Yunus is here to encourage young innovators to meet the challenges of poverty in Australia in new ways.


Staff Reporter | 20 February 2017 at 4:39 pm


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Can Social Business Lead Real Change in the Social Sector?
20 February 2017 at 4:39 pm

Nobel Peace Prize Recipient Professor Muhammad Yunus will be visiting Australia this April for the Australasian Social Business Forum. Credited as the father of microfinance, Professor Yunus is here to encourage young innovators to meet the challenges of poverty in Australia in new ways.

Professor Yunus will join Allan English (Silver Chef), Audette Exel AO (Adara Group), Graeme Wise (Adidem Group) and an all-star lineup of social innovators for the Australasian Social Business Forum on the 6 April in Melbourne – find out more here. Early bird registrations close on 28 February.

Investment-ready social businesses are encouraged to apply to be an exhibitor – find out more here.

“I’m encouraging young people to become social business entrepreneurs and contribute to the world, rather than just making money. Making money is no fun. Contributing to and changing the world is a lot more fun,” Professor Yunus said.

Australia is often termed “the lucky country”. While largely true, there are still many Australians who are living with poverty. With government and the social sector straining to meet this challenge, momentum is gathering around social business to lead real change in addressing these issues.

While there are many definitions of social business, in basic terms they are businesses started to address a social purpose, rather than maximise profits.

“Social Business is not charity. This is business: business with a social objective, which is to help people get out of poverty,” Professor Yunus said.

Professor Yunus identifies seven key characteristics that make up a social business:

  • Its core business objectives address poverty or an identified social issue that threatens people and society; rather than to maximise profit.
  • The business is able to sustain itself.
  • Investors in the business only get back their investment amount.
  • Once this investment amount is paid back, all profit stays with the company for expansion and improvement.
  • The business operates in a gender sensitive and environmentally conscious way.
  • All workers get market wage with better working conditions.
  • …Do it with joy!

Early bird pricing for the Australasian Social Business Forum is available until 28 February 2017 – register here.



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