How To Incorporate A Social Enterprise

What is a Social Enterprise?

A social enterprise is just a business that has specific social objectives. A social enterprise’s aim is still profit-driven while giving back to society and the environment at large. The profits of social enterprises can primarily fund social programs, i.e. Yellow Ribbon, The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund.

Think of social enterprises as a cross between a traditional profit maximising commercial business and a volunteer organisation. Social enterprises try to drive activities that will have financial profits, but with social goals in mind. Revenue is definitely essential in sustaining a social enterprise, however, making money is not their primary driving factor.

While social enterprises rely on revenue to sustain themselves, non-profit organisations or charities solely have to rely on external funding like donations to keep themselves running. That is the main difference between them.

In most cases, social enterprises are profitable. Reinvesting profits into their social cause is their priority, rather than paying out dividends to its shareholders.

Who is the Singapore Centre for Social Enterprise (raiSE)?

The Singapore Centre for Social Enterprise (raiSE) is the sector developer and membership body for aspiring social entrepreneurs. It also governs existing social enterprises and other individuals and organisations that are potentially interested in making contributions to the development of the Social Enterprise scene. raiSE raises awareness on social entrepreneurship and raise support for social enterprises in Singapore.

raiSE defines social enterprises as business entities set up with clear social goals; and where there are clear management intent and resources allocated to fulfil their social objectives.

There are grants that help companies focus on championing social causes, such as the VentureForGood (VFG) grant. It is a grant under raiSE to support social enterprises in various stages of their business. New and existing social enterprises that are starting up or expanding their operations can apply for up to $300,000 in grants.  The raiSE Impact Finance Plus (RIF+) is an additional scheme that social enterprises can take up. Its primary aim is to achieve a demonstrable increase in the breadth and/or depth of social impact created via its funding.

If you are looking to start a social enterprise, do look for an experienced corporate secretarial firm like us to assist you with this matter.

When in doubt, seek legal advice or consult an experienced ACRA Filing Agent.


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