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5 Things You Didn’t Know About B Corps

Posted by Luke Green

Even though Red Paddle Co has always kept its social and economic impact to a minimum, getting B Corp-certified in April 2023 still meant a lot to us. B Corps are businesses that pass a series of checks and standards which prove that business is being carried out in the right way so we couldn’t be prouder that we’ve met the mark and kept our promises. 

However, now that we’ve held our B Corp status for a couple of months, we’ve started to see what this certification means in real terms. While Red has received nothing but good feedback about our new status, many stakeholders are unsure what B Corps are and why they really matter. This question is perfectly understandable, but it’s also part of our duty as a B Corp to bust some myths and encourage others to join us in taking ownership of their impact. These are the key things to know about this rapidly growing movement.

There are over 7100 B Corps!

One of the main questions we see is ‘how many B Corps are there?’. As of September 2023, there are over 7,100 certified B Corps and these businesses aren’t limited to any one particular industry. From waste management to hospitality, growing numbers of companies are seeking to be held more accountable across a huge range of sectors. This highlights that the B Corp movement is well worth being involved with and much more than a small group of businesses struggling against the tide to create change. 

Sustainability is one of many criteria

One of the common misconceptions when it comes to B Corps is that the movement is all about the planet. Yes, there are aspects of B Corp certification that require an honest and transparent approach to sustainability, but being green isn’t the only thing a business must do to become a B Corp. Five overarching criteria are assessed in total: governance, workers, community, customers, and of course the environment. These criteria are chosen as they all create a balanced picture of the way a business operates.

You can check the status of every B Corp

Traditionally, you may expect that businesses will want to hide or oversell their own performance. However, the B Corp movement aims to promote total transparency and accountability when it comes to our actions and all B Corps must publish their performance on the B Corp website via a public profile. This means that you can check the latest status of every B Corp whenever you wish. 

Stakeholders have legal obligations

Before taking any kind of action, B Corps must abide by a legal obligation to consider the impact of their decisions on stakeholders as well as shareholders. This means that the best interests of employees, customers, suppliers, the community and the environment are all considered here at Red before we try anything radically new.

The B corp movement is global

If you’ve done much research into the B Corp movement, you might have noticed that a lot of the existing work is rooted in the United States. While B Corps did initially gain popularity across the pond, the concept has most definitely spread internationally and more and more global businesses are working towards or achieving the important certification. After all, the social and environmental issues and responsibilities that the movement aims to address are widespread so it’s only right that the network experiences global growth. 

With a greater understanding of what B Corps are and what the movement is really about, you might be interested to know what Red’s B Corp score is and what we’re doing to keep making progress. You can discover Red’s B Impact score here and we’re always happy for you to get in touch if you want to discover more about our latest sustainability initiatives.