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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Company assessing quality standard of social firms closes


Five posts face redundancy

A community interest company that assessed social enterprises for quality, has closed.

The Social Enterprise Mark was launched in 2003, bidding to become the recognised standard of good practice for social enterprises.

It charged a monthly licence fee calculated based on an organisation’s annual income and had given out around 250 accreditations to organisations.

Accountancy firm Bishop Fleming LLP began winding up the organisation last week.

Social Enterprise Mark was incorporated as a national community interest company in 2010. Its accreditation mark has a presence in 10 different countries, including South Africa, Spain, and the UAE. 

Lucy Findlay, managing director, said: “It is our belief that this is in the best interests of our mark holders and partners, considering the very difficult operating environment in which we all find ourselves currently.”

It is unsure as yet what will happen to the organisation’s five employees

Findlay apologised on behalf of the company for the situation but added that she is immensely proud of what it has achieved. 

She said: “We have led the way in demonstrating and proving the great work that social enterprises across the world do, and valuing what makes them different from shareholder led businesses.”

She said that when the company first launched, social enterprises were “poorly understood and lacked credibility”, adding: “Today, they are legitimate, mainstream ventures which are valued and trusted. SEMCIC has been central to building this legitimacy, and our legacy continues.”

Findlay said that while she is yet to decide what to do with her future, the company’s cause “remains as urgent as ever”. 

She said: “Be assured that I will continue to fight for social enterprises, championing the role they play as we meaningfully reframe our world to be a better place for people and planet.”



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