Buy Social Corporate Challenge
A group of high-profile businesses is aiming to collectively spend £1 billion with social enterprises through their procurement
Led by Social Enterprise UK in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, the Buy Social Corporate Challenge was launched in Downing Street in April 2016.
The Buy Social Corporate Challenge does two things:
- It helps large businesses to engage with a range of innovative suppliers and embeds sustainability and diversity into their core operations
- It helps high-performing social enterprise suppliers to grow their revenues and impact by tapping into corporate purchasing power
The premise is simple – if businesses need to spend money on products and services, why not spend that money in a way that maximises their positive impact on society?
Social Enterprise UK supports Challenge Partners to source from social enterprises through a package of strategic engagement, supply chain review, training, internal and external communications, brokerage and events.
The Buy Social Corporate Challenge began with 7 Founding Partners and now has 30 partners, representing a wide range of industries.
Buy Social Corporate Challenge partners
The Buy Social Corporate Challenge is now in its sixth year and over this time nearly £165 million has been spent with social enterprises by corporate partners. Over this period the Challenge has helped create 2,030 jobs – many of these going to individuals who face barriers to the labour market, showing that social enterprises can make a crucial contribution to tackling the COVID jobs crisis. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, 2020 was the best year yet on the Buy Social Corporate Challenge, with almost £73 million spent in a single year with social enterprise suppliers by corporate partners.
You can find out more about the impact of the Challenge in the Year Five Impact Report, which also looks in more depth at some of the partnerships formed between corporates and social enterprises and how the initiative is helping grow the buy social movement.