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June 10, 2010    

Social enterprises buck recession with 80% growth

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by David Masters
Social enterprises buck recession with 80% growth

Social enterprises defied the recession to achieve substantial growth during the economic downturn, according to a new study published this week.

Research by the Royal Bank of Scotland found the 100 highest growth firms in the sector reported an annual growth in revenue of 79% in the year to March.

Of the 350 firms that submitted information, the combined turnover was £812 million, putting the average turnover at £2.4 million.

Firms in the environment, recycling and renewables industry posted the highest growth rate, with an average growth rate of 49.7%.

The study was used to put together the first index measuring the growth of the top 100 social business in the UK, the RBS SE100.

A spokesperson for RBS said: “The RBS SE100 Index, which is the first of its kind, will prove to be a really valuable benchmark for the entire social enterprise sector.”

Nick Hurd, minister for civil society, added: “The RBS SE100 is a hugely important tool for proving the success and potential of social enterprise.

“Already it shows phenomenal growth which will boost confidence in the sector and open doors to private finance.”

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