What does it mean to be a B-Corporation?
A Benefit Corporation or a “B-Corp.” is a private enterprise that creates a public benefit by allowing businesses to be profitable while considering the welfare of society and the environment. Benefit Corporations require businesses to make their practices transparent to the public. Becoming a Benefit Corporation has certain requirements, but it is mostly a three-step process. First, a company must complete a “B Survey” and receive a composite score above 80 points (out of 200) to be certified as a Benefit Corporation. Then, a company’s governing documents must be revised to include the interests of all stakeholders and shareholders. Finally, a company must sign a document describing the benefits and duties of becoming a Benefit Corporation, along with a “Declaration of Interdependence” symbolizing the company’s commitment to the Benefit Corporation.
What are the Benefits of becoming B-Corporation?
There are many ways that being a B-Corporation can help improve your company. For example, during the certification process, many companies are able to highlight areas of their company structure that can be change. Also, your Benefit corporation status can attract investors which can lead to increased legal protection, accountability and transparency around your mission. Benefit corporations can also speed up investor due diligence through the production of an annual benefit report, which describes their qualitative activities aimed at producing a public benefit.
How do you form a B-Corporation Florida?
Florida is now one of twenty-six states that allow “B-Corporations.” In Florida, if you are creating a new corporation and want to become a B-Corp., the articles of incorporation must state that the corporation is a benefit corporation under Florida Statute 607.603. However, if you are already established as a corporation, but want to change into a Benefit Corporation, the articles of incorporation must be amended to include a statement that the corporation is a benefit corporation under Florida Statute 607.604, but the amendment must be adopted by the minimum status vote. A Benefit Corporation’s Annual Report must be made public and available, free of charge, to anyone that requests it.