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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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Waiting on the world to change

May 20th, 2010 7:17pm - 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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Since the L3C did not legally exist until 2008, most L3C entrepreneurs first learned about the concept in either 2008 or 2009. Many did indicate, however, that they have been involved in social enterprise for several more years. How they got started:

Internet searches, online news and social media were very common methods by which entrepreneurs first learned of the L3C concept—anything from a random Internet search, to finding an L3C feed on Twitter, to reading a news or journal article about the L3C. Others named specific Internet sites ...

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To L3C or 501(c)(3)?

May 19th, 2010 5:47pm - 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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One of the greatest arguments against the L3C is that it is unnecessary. Yet in talking to L3C entrepreneurs, many feel that their particular business concept fits best—and perhaps only—as an L3C.

They do not want to be a traditional, 501(c)(3) nonprofitbecause they do not want to be constrained by the strict compliance of the 501(c)(3) world. While most of their businesses and business ideas have a very nonprofit slant in terms of mission, these entrepreneurs do believe they can turn a fair profit—enough ...

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To L3C or LLC?

May 18th, 2010 2:08pm - 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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One of the greatest arguments against the L3C is that it is unnecessary. Yet in talking to L3C entrepreneurs, many feel that their particular business concept fits best—and perhaps only—as an L3C.

They do not want to be a traditional, for-profit company because their business idea is essentially a socially minded one first. They don’t ever want to lose that mission-first mantra and feel like as an LLC or small corporation, or something else like that, they may eventually be persuaded into a mindset of profit first, social ...

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Passion, Passion, Passion

May 17th, 2010 11:09am - 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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Passion, Passion, Passion

A common thread woven through our conversations with various L3C entrepreneurs is a very high level of enthusiasm and engagement for their business idea and for the L3C. While passion is certainly an expected sentiment at the launch of new businesses, the L3C entrepreneurs seem to take it a step further. They find the L3C opportunity, in short, to be revolutionary. Some of the most commonly held values include:

A deep belief in embracing a double (or triple) bottom line

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More jazzed about SE than ever before!

May 4th, 2010 8:55am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

What a time we had in San Francisco for the 2010 Social Enterprise Alliance/World Forum. Three days with 700 other people who I didn’t have to explain myself to. They spoke, I got it. I spoke, they got it.  Rinse, repeat. I was among my peeps.

There’s so much to be said for setting aside time to spend with your peers. Yes, some of what I heard (and much of what I shared in our session) could be considered preaching to the choir, but if the choir is a bunch of kick over the silos, change the world, find a way to fund it, future-focused, innovative, creative folks, then I’m happy to sing right along.

The few months leading up to #socent10 found me occasionally angry, sometimes weary and often frustrated with the stale approaches and attitudes I witness on a daily basis.  More than the frustration with old school thinking was wonderment at the lack of desire of some folks to even consider alternatives or new ideas.

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