UK venture capital firm’s social and environmental performance accredited by global non-profit purpose certification
Early-stage venture capital firm Jenson Funding Partners (Jenson) has announced its certification as a B Corporation (or B Corp), joining a growing group of companies reinventing business by pursuing purpose as well as profit. Jenson, which invests in fast-growth companies from pre-seed to Series A, has been certified by B Lab, the not-for-profit behind the B Corp movement, as having met rigorous social and environmental standards which represent its commitment to goals outside of shareholder profit.
The B Corp certification addresses the entirety of a business’ operations and covers five key impact areas of Governance, Workers, Community, Environment and Customers. The certification process is rigorous, with applicants required to reach a benchmark score of over 80 while providing evidence of socially and environmentally responsible practices relating to energy supplies, waste and water use, worker compensation, diversity and corporate transparency. To complete the certification, the company will legally embed their commitment to purpose beyond profit in their company articles.
Jenson has traditionally managed sector agnostic portfolios – meaning the firm invests across many industries. However, sustainability and the contribution of a company towards net-zero goals has been a consistent theme visible in portfolio companies like TreeApp, an app which lets users plant a tree for free every day or The Seam, a company that connects consumers with local tailors and seamstresses to extend the life of old clothes.
Sarah Barber, CEO of Jenson, said: “B-Corp is the world-leading certification for purpose-led businesses because of the rigour of its assessments. It’s trusted by investors and businesses around the world.
“The venture capital community can play a vital role in helping society overcome some of our greatest challenges – but to do so it must be held to the highest standards. That was the main driving factor behind us beginning this process, and we hope other firms will do the same.”
Jenson is now part of a community of 5,495 businesses globally who have certified as B Corps. The B Corp community in the UK, representing a broad cross section of industries and sizes, comprises over 800 companies and include well-known brands such as The Guardian, innocent, Patagonia, The Body Shop, and organic food pioneers Abel & Cole.
Chris Turner, Executive Director of B Lab UK, said: “We are delighted to welcome Jenson to the B Corp community. This is a movement of companies who are committed to changing how business operates and believe business really can be a force for good. We know that Jenson are going to be a fantastic addition to the community and will continue driving the conversation forward”.
“We are pleased to have B Corps of all shapes and sizes as part of our community – from startups to multinationals and across many different industries. Business is a powerful force and B Corps demonstrate that you can do good in any sector. Welcoming Jenson is an exciting moment because they have an opportunity to lead the way within the world of venture capital and early-stage businesses. We and the rest of the B Corp community are really pleased to support Jenson in paving the way for a new way of doing things”.
There are currently over 900 B Corps in the UK and 5,495 worldwide. Other venture capital industry B Corps include Octopus Group and MMC Ventures.