Cause Capitalism; Changing The World By Changing Business
Businesses exist to solve problems and innovate. The reward for this is profit. But when profit is the only driving force behind the operation of a business, the cost of doing business can be detrimental to the community and environment of the said business.
Cause capitalism sets the ideal precedence for profit companies to follow. It is not just about solving problems for a profit but being mindful of the communities they serve and helping the vulnerable groups identified within them. One of the best methods to do this is by forming a sustainable partnership with a non-profit of their choice. They can then hold initiatives presenting sustainable solutions for the problems of the vulnerable groups.
“By definition, Cause Capitalism is when a for-profit chooses as its partner, a non-profit; not as a gimmick but as a true sustainable partner.”
So, what is cause capitalism?
As defined by Cause leader and serial entrepreneur Steve Down, Cause Capitalism is when a for-profit chooses as its partner, a non-profit; not as a gimmick but as a true sustainable partner.
Steve Down, the founder and father of cause capitalism, made this the foundational principle for all his businesses. One of them; Financially Fit, is a cause company partnering with The Goat Foundation, a non-profit that seeks to uplift widowed households financially. Through this partnership, Financially Fit not only caters to the need for a financially fit and financially literate population but also the economic empowerment of vulnerable women, particularly widows.
“It is important to emphasize that, any for-profit company that seeks to practise cause capitalism is free to choose any vulnerable group they wish to help and any non-profit partner whose initiatives target to uplift that specific group identified.” Professor Anne who has been extensively involved in advising key stakeholders and government leaders on this sustainable approach explained further. Her insights on how nations across the region and Africa can achieve sustainable change, lead her to advocate for liberal but intentional and sustainable partnerships between businesses and non-profits.
Cause Capitalism enables businesses to focus on making an impact rather than just making profits. This is why companies from inception, contribute a percentage of their gross revenue to their non-profit partners and both share equal responsibility in initiatives that support the cause they choose.
Financial literacy is particularly low in most countries in Africa as compared to other regions across the globe. Financially Fit in Africa aims to solve this by offering education on essential finance concepts and personal wealth education. This helps income earners make better financial decisions. It will also help in harnessing the true potential of Kenya, East Africa and the continent by having its young population practising informed investing, borrowing, saving and spending habits that create a positive national impact. By changing the way people feel, think and act about money, we believe they can plan and secure their financial future better.
In many ways, our mission seeks to make SDGs 1 (No poverty) and 4 (quality education) a reality in the lives of many across Africa. Partnering with The Goat Foundation helps us not only empower middle-income households but also uplift the vulnerable marginalised groups, particularly widows from low-income households.
We believe that businesses can exist to solve our problems as well as make an impact in the communities they’re based in. By practising the principle of cause capitalism, businesses as a force for good.
In what ways do you believe businesses can be a force for good? We’d love to hear your approach and idea. Comment below