Social Enterprises/Impact Companies

We are the leading law firm in New Zealand when it comes to Social Enterprise and Impact Companies.

These forms of entity combine impact with business by taking the form of a company which has a dual focus – ensuring profit (proving sustainability) while also focussing on purpose (supporting some social, environmental, cultural or other impact, beyond profit).

We have worked extensively with setting up these forms of entity and contributed to the debate about what their future should be in our country.  For example, we published the book “Social Enterprises in New Zealand: A Legal Handbook” as well as “Laying Foundations for Reimagining Business: Essays”.

We also contributed as a co-author to the Ākina Foundation led report “Structuring for Impact: Evolving Legal Structures for Business in New Zealand”.

Designing a structure which captures the purpose, ensures sustainability through profits and communicates this well to others is something we have assisted clients with who come from across New Zealand.

Impact can be achieved through many different “legal vehicles”.  We have worked extensively with both sides of the spectrum since purpose driven people sometimes set up Charities, but they also sometimes set up Businesses.  So we have worked with a variety ranging from Charities that want to explore setting up a Company structure to achieve impact, through to Businesses setting up a Charity which they can start to also have impact and ensure new funding streams are opened up.

Our view is that all these legal structures are like tools available – it makes sense to utilise as many as are possible to achieve the ultimate aim of having impact.

We have experience in all aspects of social enterprise including:

  • Designing legal structures for impact
  • Preparing Constitutions and Shareholder Agreements
  • Ensuring the structure allows for impact investing
  • Align business with charity options

Want to know more? We would love to have a chat!

Contact one of our social enterprise experts

Need more information? See our latest blogs on social enterprise/Impact Company matters