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interSectors Take Five for Friday

January 23rd, 2015 3:08pm

A weekly(-ish) roundup of what what’s new or newsworthy with us, our clients, our partners and friends. Mostly professional, some personal – with a focus on the positive.

1.       L3C interest ebbs and flows – this month it’s flowing. Based on the number of downloads of Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? and inquiries to interSector from folks hoping to start an L3C, we know that interest in this LLC-based structure for social good is here to stay.

2.       A new book to support the above point. From our good friend and leader in the entrepreneurship, social enterprise and impact investing space, Marc Lane brings u ...

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Who Cares About the L3C?

January 14th, 2011 4:30pm - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso, MNM

Once again, Colorado legislators are entering into discussions about the relative merits of the L3C—the new-ish business structure that puts a focus on achieving social mission before profit.  The social purpose is "baked in" - as our corporate clients like to say - from the start, making it part of the business culture and brand.

In particular, a small group of influential Colorado voices are rehashing old arguments about why the L3C is flawed and doesn't live up to its promises. Although I'm not going to debate the pros and cons of tranched investing and access to program related investments (for expertise in the intricacies of the L3C, contact my partner, Rick Zwetsch) I have several bigger picture thoughts to share.

In March of 2008, ...

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Posted in: L3C

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POLL: L3C Legislation in 2011

December 22nd, 2010 6:46pm - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

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Posted in: L3C, Quick Polls

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L3C visionaries share their thoughts...

June 13th, 2010 1:57pm - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

The following is an excerpt from Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? The pioneers of social enterprise’s revolutionary new suffix. Available for download at: www.interSectorL3C.com/white_paper.html

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Many L3C entrepreneurs have an idealist vision for what the L3C can ultimately be, if these challenges and hurdles can be addressed. First and foremost, they want to see the nonprofit and for-profit worlds continue to converge. For some, that means they want the L3C to essentially become a “fourth sector”—to follow in the path of the public sector (government), the private sector (business) and the nonprofit sector (sometimes called the third sector). For others, they see the L3C as somehow servin ...

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It's safe to come into the L3C water...

June 10th, 2010 11:52am - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

L3C entrepreneurs also hope for more education and especially more leadership from leading foundations to expand education about L3Cs. Several said that, ultimately, they think foundation support or lack thereof will either make or break the L3C. Some mentioned that if the biggest foundations in the country—the ones truly viewed as “thought leaders”—came out in favor of the L3C, the tide would surely shift behind it. In late 2009, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced that it would be placing more emphasis on PRI investments in the coming years. By extension, many think this indicates opening a door to L3Cs, but no major foundation has made a truly public and overt endorsement of the L3C model so far:

 

The foundations need to get behind it. It’s up to the foundations to find great projects and start to think differently a little bit. I think that is where the L3C will ei ...

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What's next for the L3C?

June 9th, 2010 10:43am - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

The following is an excerpt from Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? The pioneers of social enterprise’s revolutionary new suffix. Available for download at: www.interSectorL3C.com/white_paper.html

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What’s Next?

Many L3C entrepreneurs feel that any legislation or attention directed toward the L3C is a major accomplishment. They are proud of the momentum that has been increasing in the past year and are hopeful that it will continue to build. As legislation continues to come together in various states and the spotlight shines brighter on the L3C, the more optimistic their outlook. That said, most of these entrepreneurs also see somekey, tangible steps that need to be taken in the next couple of yearsto make the m ...

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The L3C is so revolutionary and potentially so threatening...

June 3rd, 2010 11:37am - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

The prevalence of misinformation is another area of concern for L3C entrepreneurs. They worry that there is a lot of room for falsifying information on the Internet (whether intentional or not), which makes it hard to validate what is true and false—a big concern for such a new and sometimes misunderstood movement. While many note that recent articles in the Nonprofit Times and at www.fastcompany.com and www.entrepreneur.com have helped clarify information in the business press, and that L3C founder Robert Lang’s website Americans for Community Development (www.americansforcommunitydevelopment.org) is a good resource, they still worry that the wrong information is too prevalent in other locations on the Web:

 

With the advent of instantaneous information, it&rsquo ...

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Concerns: Yes there are many

June 2nd, 2010 12:26pm - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

The following is an excerpt from Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? The pioneers of social enterprise’s revolutionary new suffix. Available for download at: www.interSectorL3C.com/white_paper.html

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Concerns: Yes, There Are Many

While their passion as L3C entrepreneurs is palpable and infectious,there are definitely several common concerns that consistently wove through our conversations. These concerns are based more on the big-picture surrounding the L3C structure and concept as a whole; specific concerns over next steps will be addressed in the next section. Some of those big-picture concerns included:

Wanting clear metrics to define the social purpose of an L3C Wanting to better define ...

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"Nobody knows what the hell it is"

May 27th, 2010 3:46pm - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

The following is an excerpt from Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? The pioneers of social enterprise’s revolutionary new suffix. Available for download at: www.interSectorL3C.com/white_paper.html

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Despite some small successes in working with foundations, L3C entrepreneurs said that overall there is little to no awareness of the L3C in their community, be it within their region or within their respective field. As one L3C entrepreneur succinctly put it: “Nobody knows what the hell it is.” As such, several L3C owners have given talks at local workshops or universities or written journal articles advocating for the L3C in their respective fields. Many espoused the sentiment that one of their biggest responsibilities aside fro ...

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At the small family foundations...

May 25th, 2010 8:23pm - Posted By: Rick Zwetsch

The following is an excerpt from Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? The pioneers of social enterprise’s revolutionary new suffix. Available for download at: www.interSectorL3C.com/white_paper.html

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While large national foundations seem to have the most awareness regarding L3Cs, some entrepreneurs feel the best shot for foundation program-related investments would actually be at more local levels. They see less red tape and possibly more long-term partnership potential at the local and smaller family foundations:
 

We were talking more with bigger national foundations, but we’re changing that strategy. This year, we’re going to be focusing more local, [where] there is less bureaucracy. If a family foundation ...

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