9 Aug, 17
The Social Business Wales Conference 2017, funded by the Welsh Government and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), will be held at Llangollen Pavilion in Denbighshire on 5th October and feature keynote speakers from a range of backgrounds – government, third sector, public sector, industry bodies and social enterprise – all providing an inspiring and challenging perspective on the growth opportunities for social businesses in Wales. The one-day business conference will be compered by S4C’s Morgan Jones.
Keynote speakers confirmed:
- Secretary for Economy & Infrastructure, Ken Skates AM – Addressing the conference for a second successive year, the Cabinet Secretary has responsibility for social enterprise and the social economy within his remit.
- Alan Mahon, Brewgooder – Brewgooder is a Scottish social enterprise that donates 100% of its profits from the sales of craft beer to clean water projects around the world. Alan will talk about how the business has grown since its inception and the challenges of upscaling, by selling nationally through a supermarket.
- Jo Wolfe, Reason Digital – Jo will be talking about the Third Sector Digital Maturity Matrix, a free tool that assesses the level to which a not-for-profit organisation is making use of digital technology, and its capability to do so. Jo developed the matrix during her time at Breast Cancer Care.
The Conference will also be running a series of practical workshops and facilitated discussions, with contributions from North Wales’s leading social entrepreneurs, including: Menna Jones of Antur Waunfawr; Sharon Jones of Creating Enterprise; Kelly Davies of Vi-Ability; Alison Hill of CAIA Park and Ceri Cunnington of Antur Stiniog.
Nicola Mehegan, project manager for Social Business Wales at the Wales Co-operative Centre, said:
“We are delighted to bring the Social Business Wales Conference to north Wales, which is a becoming a real hive for social business innovation and best practice. We hope the Conference will provide all delegates with inspiration, ideas and practical skills to help them enter new markets, develop new products and adopt new structures – all of them which enable them to grow and be more sustainable.
“The social enterprise sector in Wales is redefining how business gets done, supporting over 40,000 paid jobs and over 48,000 volunteers and contributing an estimated £2,37billion* to the Welsh economy. We also know that when you buy from them, society profits.”
Businesses attending the event will also be able to connect with a range of exhibitors from the public, private and social enterprise sector in Wales. The exhibitors will feature all the finalists from the Social Business Wales Awards 2017, which have all made a significant economical and social impact across their industry over the past 12 months.
“We will be encouraging all our delegates attending, whether they are from a social enterprise, charity or local authority to use this opportunity to build partnerships with one another and do business.”
The Social Business Wales Conference is free and open to any social business in Wales that is looking to grow. To book your free place visit the Social Business Wales Conference 2017 page on our website.
Social Business Wales is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and Welsh Government. It is delivered by the Wales Co-operative Centre and is part of the Business Wales service. The project provides business support to social businesses across Wales which have plans for growth and expansion.
Wales Co-operative Centre is the national body for co-operatives and social businesses. It also manages projects which tackle poverty and promote inclusion through co-operative working.
Did you know - Social Business Sector in Wales*
• The entire sector is worth an estimated £2.37billion to the Welsh economy
• The sector supports 40,800 paid jobs and between 48,000-58,000 volunteers
• Social businesses are found in areas of social deprivation, supporting communities, offering jobs and training and often providing services that the public and private sectors would struggle to maintain
• Social businesses are businesses driven by social or environmental aims. In Wales, a large number of these are focused on improving a particular community or improving health and well-being.
• The sector is growing and evolving. 84% of social businesses attracted new customers or clients in the last 12 months, whilst 24% attracted investment to expand during the same period. The sector is confident for the future, with 69% of social businesses expecting turnover to increase over the next two to three years
• Social businesses identified the need for support with finding investment, marketing and finance to help grow and sustain their business.
*The ‘Mapping the Social Business Sector in Wales’ report identified a total of 1,698 organisations as operating in the social business sector in Wales, which includes co-operatives, mutuals, social enterprises and employee owned businesses. The report is based on survey data from 810 organisations, representing 48% of the sector.
For any press enquiries, please contact Mike Erskine, Marketing officer at the Wales Co-operative Centre on 07464548058 or email firstname.lastname@example.org