First Minister Alex Salmond at World’s Biggest Social Enterprise Event

Posted: 21 March 2012, in Press Release

Date: Wed 21 March 2012
Embargo: Immediate
Contact: Duncan Thorp 0131 243 2654 / 07501 221 581


First Minister Alex Salmond to speak at world’s biggest social enterprise event

Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond MSP, will be the keynote speaker at The Social Enterprise Exchange, the world’s biggest social enterprise event.

This unique forum brings together social enterprises and those wanting to do good business with Scotland and the UK’s innovative social business movement. Organised by Social Enterprise Scotland, Social Enterprise UK and CEiS Events, the event takes place at the SECC in Glasgow on Tuesday 27 March.

First Minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond, said:

‪“Social enterprises as part of an enterprising third sector are making a significant contribution to supporting a strong and sustainable return to growth for Scotland’s economy – and we are committed to doing all we can to enable the sector to develop and evolve to deliver its full potential.

‪“The Social Enterprise Exchange event is providing an opportunity for social enterprises to learn from each other as well as from best practice around the world. It will enable organisations to innovate together and pick up new business. I am confident it will have a positive impact on the growth of the sector and the Scottish economy as a whole.”

Laurie Russell of Social Enterprise Scotland said: “Scotland is probably the best country in the world for social enterprise. We have a tradition of being creative, enterprising and we are passionate about community empowerment and social inclusion.

“We are hosting the world’s biggest social enterprise event this year in Glasgow and I am delighted that the First Minister, Alex Salmond, will be making the keynote address at this unique event. The Scottish Government’s support has helped nurture the growth of social enterprises to make a real impact in communities across Scotland.”

Social Enterprise Scotland is an independent, Scottish, member-led organisation, built and controlled by social enterprises. Membership is open to anyone.


Notes to Editors:

1. For all information about the Social Enterprise Exchange event click here:

2. To download a high resolution image of the First Minister click here:

3. What is social enterprise? Social enterprises are businesses that trade specifically for social and/or environmental purposes. Social enterprises exist to make a profit just like any private sector business. However, instead of paying dividends to share holders, profits are reinvested into social and environmental purposes. Without making a profit, social enterprises cannot meet their objectives; they must trade, to be sustainable. The more profit made, the more can be invested in the purpose. This more-than-profit approach is used by, for example: Co-operatives and mutuals, Credit Unions, Housing Associations, Social Firms, Development Trusts and Community Interest Companies (CICs), operating in every corner of Scotland and in every sector of the economy.

4. What examples are there? Hebridean Chocolates (Stornoway), The Big Issue, Kibble (Paisley), The Engine Shed (Edinburgh), The Wise Group (Glasgow), Aberdeen Foyer, Bookdonors (Scottish Borders), Buchan Dial-a-Community Bus, Centre of Health and Wellbeing, Link Group Ltd (Edinburgh), Impact Arts, Skye Permaculture Ltd, Institute of Local Television, Mediaco-op and North Glasgow Housing Association.

5. What is Social Enterprise Scotland? We are the national collective voice for social enterprise in Scotland. We bring together social enterprises and their supporters into a strong campaigning force, to represent the full range of social enterprises. We raise the profile of social enterprise as a dynamic business model, champion the values and benefits of social enterprise to a broad range of stakeholders and represent the needs and views of social enterprise to decision-makers in Scotland. We are an independent, Scottish, membership-led organisation. Membership is open to anyone.