Explained: Indy’s B-corp organizations

What is a B-Corp and how does a company qualify for it? We’re sharing everything you need to know about the certification.

People walking on bridge with skyline in background

Achieving “B-Corp status” means a company successfully balances purpose + profit.

Photo by INDYtoday team

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Whether you own a business yourself or just enjoy supporting them, you might have heard the term “B-Corp.” But do you know what it means?

We’re sharing the definition and how it applies to several Indy businesses. Plus, we’re giving you the details on how to achieve “B-Corp status” with your own business.

What is a “B-Corp?”

A B-Corp, or “Benefit Corporation” is a certification businesses can receive if they fulfill the following requirements from B Lab:

  • Achieve a B Impact Assessment score of 80+
  • Complete a legal commitment to be accountable to all stakeholders — not just shareholders
  • Allow performance information to be measured against B Lab’s standards

It’s essentially incorporating third-party oversight so that businesses live up to their mission to give back to the community. One well-known example of a B-Corp is the shoe brand TOMS, which donates one pair of shoes to those in need for every pair sold.

Who has the certification?

There are a number of different Hoosier businesses with this status, including:

  • Selfless.ly — a “virtual foundation” that allows company leaders to increase their impact + offer philanthropy as a benefit to their employees
  • Black Onyx Management — a research firm that helps build an infrastructure for continued equity and inclusion within organizations like Fortune 500 companies and major non-profits
  • NEXT Studios — an entrepreneurial innovation studio housed in the 16 Tech Innovation District that helps under-served founders turn their ideas into new startups

How can I get my business certified?

The process can be time-consuming, but the general steps are outlined on B Lab’s website and vary depending on your business type. Some noteworthy checklist items are:

  • Gather supporting documentation + data
  • Take the B Impact Assessment
  • Verify your business with a B Lab analyst
  • Sign the B Corp Agreement

Are you a B-Corp business? Let us know for a chance to be featured in an upcoming newsletter.

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