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C1. Business Mission

Intent: Ensure a business mission that encourages noble and positive business activities and decision making, while discouraging greed, exploitation and business activities that may, in the short term, be beneficial to the business, but that have negative social or environmental impacts.

Balancing “Doing Good” Versus Economic Mission. The principal reason for organizing as a benefit corporation is to incorporate broader social and environmental goals, and to protect directors from shareholder pressure to maximize return on investment despite negative environmental and social factors/costs.   For this reason, in compelling cases, a benefit corporation’s highly beneficial mission could possibly overshadow certain other components of BCSI Criteria, including economic, environmental and social requirements/factors.  For example, a business that is deeply and genuinely engaged in reducing hunger in Africa might pay less than the prevailing wage, or lower benefits, no profit sharing, little or no retirement savings.  Or, it might provide less than ideal office space and work environments.  In those cases, where the the commitment and action devoted to noble purposes is highly compelling, BCSI Criteria does not rule out the possibility that such enterprises may be accredited as a BCSI Benefit Corporation, as determined on a case-by-case basis by a BCSI accredited AIE.