Press Release: MovingWorlds Announces New Social Enterprise Program, S-Grid, to Accelerate Post-COVID Recovery
S-GRID, or sustainable growth of revenues for international development, is launching in partnership with SAP to ensure a sustainable recovery from the COVID trigger recession. It will help social enterprises build the skills and capacity needed to plug their social and/or environmental-positive solutions into global value chains and international corporations. S-GRID is a first step in creating a regenerative economy and more equitable recovery.
“S-GRID is the first program of its kind to help social enterprises build the skills, know-how, and connections needed to participate in global supply chains, and in a way they can truly deliver social impact,” said Alexandra van der Ploeg, Head of SAP Corporate Social Responsibility. “With the socio-economic implications of COVID-19 hitting social enterprises across the world especially hard, SAP is doubling down on its long-standing commitment to accelerating the social enterprise sector through access to talent, technology and markets. SAP has a powerful platform to help the private sector put their money where their purpose is and scale the social enterprise sector. Corporations today spend trillions of dollars – 3 trillion on SAP Ariba’s platform alone – related to sourcing and distribution chains. Imagine the positive impact that could be made through procurement spend if just a few percent is directed towards social-first organizations.”
Annually, governments contribute over $150 Billion in aid and nonprofit donations hover around $400 Billion per year. Combined, this philanthropy is less than 4% of the world’s GDP and it’s not creating the scalable impact needed. Corporations acknowledge this and are heavily investing in improving the sustainability, equity, and transparency of their supply chains because they are competing for consumers, who are demanding more sustainable products. According to JUST Capital, “almost nine in 10 Americans agree that this [COVID] is an opportunity for large companies to hit “reset” and focus on doing right by their stakeholders.”
A few corporate innovators are leading the way: Patagonia partners with suppliers who increase transparency of their supply chains; Dandelion chocolates sources more ethical, higher quality beans from Maya Mountain Cacao; Microsoft reaches emerging market enterprises and engineers through Mawingu networks. But partnerships are limited and corporations struggle to find social enterprises that have the know-how and systems to connect into more efficient supply chains. S-GRID will fill this gap.
By providing on-going and on-demand training, peer-based support, and pro bono consulting, S-GRID helps social enterprises position their products and services in a way that will attract the growing demand from the corporate sector. The program will also help team members within each enterprise develop the business development skills needed to engage in the sector.
“What makes this moment in time so pivotal is that inequities and environmental degradation tend to increase after recessions,” said Mark Horoszowski, CEO and co-founder of MovingWorlds, SPC. “By investing in social enterprises today, we can help them integrate into the post-COVID recovery to better distribute wealth while using regenerative business models to address the ongoing environmental crisis.”
Social enterprises that are accepted into the S-GRID program will benefit from MovingWorlds’ long-term partnerships with corporations like Kering, educational materials from some of the worlds’ top social enterprise accelerators like Village Capital, business development theory from institutions like University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business, and a global network of skills-based pro bono support from employees of companies like SAP.
“As a start-up, we have participated in many accelerators, but we are particularly keen to apply for S-GRID,” said Louise Bleach, business development manager at Desolenator. “We are excited by the prospect of whole team training but especially the potential to form strategic corporate partnerships. Building meaningful connections in the corporate sphere is a challenge faced by all small enterprises. As such, we are looking forward to exploring how S-GRID is able to accelerate and foster these connections so we can focus on what we do best – providing water to those at the forefront of the water crisis.”
S-GRID is the first social enterprise support program to operate with an on-demand model, meaning there is no start or end date, and accepted social enterprises can receive support for as long they need it, available to the social entrepreneur, and all other members of the team. S-GRID is now accepting applications from mission-driven organizations around the world.
Photo courtesy of Bill Oxford.