Selnet recognised in UK’s Top 100 Social Enterprises

Selnet have been recognised as one of the UK’s leading social enterprises in the 2019 NatWest SE100 Awards. We were delighted to have been shortlisted for the Growth category too, after securing 3 Building Better Opportunities projects, NatWest Skills and Opportunities funding and Lancashire’s crisis support (furniture) service. Partnership Manager Donna and Network Coordinator Dawn represented Selnet at the event, promoting the outstanding work happening across Lancashire, Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen.

Selnet are working hard to shine a light on the social enterprises across the Lancashire area and to secure opportunities for start-up, development and growth of the sector – Opportunities like the Building for Sustainability leadership programme which we’re partnering with the Social Enterprise Academy to deliver. The deadline for applications is the 5th April, so apply now if you’d like to participate! 

This recognition for Selnet follows our CEO Liz Tapner’s recent awards, as the most influential woman in social enterprise (Social Enterprise UK, 2018) and as one of the top 100 Northern Power Women in 2019, across all sectors and industries in North of England.


SE100 Awards

Nearly 300 people gathered in central London this week to hear who had won the top spots in this year’s NatWest SE100 Awards. Seven awards were made to outstanding social enterprises from a shortlist of 40 spanning organisations working in many different parts of the UK, from Cornwall to Scotland. The Top 100 social enterprises from those who applied were also listed, in this year’s NatWest SE100 Index

The winners were:

It’s much harder to be a top social enterprise than a top enterprise… It requires a lot of passion, perseverance, and resilience.

– Simon Jacobs, NatWest


The strongest field yet

Speaking at the event, Simon Jacobs, chief administration officer at RBS/NatWest and chair of NatWest Social & Community Capital, the bank’s social investment charity, said: “It’s much harder to be a top social enterprise than a top enterprise. Not only do you need the great idea,  you need to be able to sell it and communicate it. You need to be really clear about your impact… Very often you’re working where there’s been some market dislocation or failure – that’s a really risky part of society to work in as a business. It requires a lot of passion, perseverance, and resilience.” He went on to praise the “powerful” network among the social enterprise sector, saying people were “really invested in the success” of one another. 

Eddie Finch, Partner at Buzzacott Accountants, said: “As far as this year’s SE100 is concerned I’d say that the quality of the field in all categories, but particularly the leaders’ award and the resilience category which I was closest to, was the best I can recall in the nine years of involvement. There was fantastic mix of imaginative and inspiring start-ups and mature business organisations that continue to deliver on economic and social inclusion, environmental sustainability and a host of other social value aims.”

The team at Buzzacott accountants – who have supported the SE100 since it launched nine years ago – carried out due diligence during the shortlisting process for the Growth, Trailblazing Newcomer and Resilience categories.

Neil McLean, CEO of the Social Enterprise Academy and one of the external judges, said: “In an era marked by the continual withdrawal of public resources and the need for greater international collaboration to tackle global issues, to learn of these initiatives being led by entrepreneurial leaders in social enterprise is inspiring and brings a much-needed optimism for the future. It has been an absolute privilege and a pleasure to be a part of the panel judging the 2019 SE100 awards. The entries are testament to the principle that it is not just possible for both social and business causes to be served and thrive but it’s an absolute imperative that it does so.”


Visit the Pioneer’s Post for more about the awards and to see the full top 100 list.


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