Social Business Directory

Social businesses in Wales form a dynamic, growing sector. Our research estimates that the sector is worth £2.37 billion to the Welsh economy, supports approximately 40,800 jobs, and offers opportunities to volunteer to approximately 48,000 – 58,000 people.

Social Business Wales directory

A list of social businesses in Wales, including short descriptions and contact details.

Download the directory

 

Social Business mapping report

Download and read the full report (3.9MB pdf)

Social Business mapping report - executive summary

Download and read the executive summary now (362.7KB pdf)

Overview

Social businesses include co-operatives, mutuals, social enterprises and employee owned businesses.  Our research surveyed almost half the businesses operating in the sector and provides an update on our 2014 report.  The survey was conducted between September and December 2016.

Key findings

The sector is worth £2.37 billion to the Welsh economy, supports approximately 40,800 jobs, and offers opportunities to volunteer to approximately 48,000 – 58,000 people.

  • 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.  The sector is confident for the future, with 69% of social businesses expecting turnover to increase over the next two to three years.
  • Access to funding was commonly cited as a barrier to growth while a growing proportion highlight time pressures as a significant barrier.
  • Social businesses identified the need for support with finding investment, marketing and finance to help grow and sustain their businesses.

 

Conclusions

There is clear evidence of a growing, increasingly confident and entrepreneurial social business sector that is built upon strengthening foundations. The report suggests that the sector has experienced real growth in the two years since the last in-depth research was carried out. It offers a snapshot of a sector that is dynamic and responsive and is constantly looking to evolve and offer new products and services.

The increase in turnover, jobs and volunteer opportunities supported by the sector will have an impact on local economies, community cohesion, and individual people’s potential to develop themselves through paid employment, work experience, and training. The social benefits of these businesses have tangible effects which are having a positive impact on communities throughout Wales.

In Autumn 2016, Social Business Wales commissioned Wavehill Ltd to conduct research and data collection about the social business sector in Wales. Social business is an umbrella term which includes social enterprises, co-operatives and employee-owned businesses. During this exercise, 654 social businesses gave their consent to be listed in this directory. The directory does not list all social businesses in Wales.

Social Business Wales accepts no liability for the content of this directory, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.

Any amendments should be emailed to marketingteam@wales.coop.

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.