Planning for scale: How might social ventures build scalable models that will fly

Today UnLtd have published their first report with findings from their research on the 25 social enterprises they had chosen for their Big Venture Challenge. At Patients Know Best we are honored to have been part of these 25, chosen as the top social enterprises in the UK.

The report is well worth reading as it describes UnLtd’s ingredients for signalling potential for scale:

  • A business model that can deliver financial returns and impact at scale.
  • A compelling entrepreneur who is experienced in their field of operation and has built a strong team and partnerships.
  • A compelling track record of social and financial performance in this or previous ventures and a commitment to reporting against targets.
  • A viable growth plan, including an appropriately sized and timed investment ask.

They also spell out their criteria for the next stage in scaling:

  1. Increased Geographical Reach of services – to at least multi-regional or national.
  2. Increased Number of Beneficiaries by factor of at least 20% over three years.
  3. Increased Turnover by an average rate of at least 20% over three years.
  4. Increased Staff Size by an average rate of at least 20% over three years.
  5. External Investment leveraged that matches or exceeds our grant contribution.
  6. Social impact that scales in line with the organisation.

As I read these criteria a year on from our receiving the award, it is reassuring to see how our growth has happened. We have gone beyond the UK with clients serving patients and doctors from all over the world. We have already doubled the number of hospitals we are serving in this year, and our software revenues are over 5 times last year’s. We have doubled our staff, and raised money from Silicon Valley investors. And all this time we have reinforced the message of patient control as the driver for truly patient-centered care.

You can download the full PDF from here as well.

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