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Anya Ciecierski, CAL Business Solutions

Connecticut’s First Benefit Corporation Versus Non Profit Corporation


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    In early October, Connecticut innovator Christopher Brechlin revealed that he would convert his Willimantic civic startup, Blueprint for a Dream, into one of Connecticut's first benefit corporations. Now known as Blueprint for Impact, the initiative aims to help nonprofits use their data to "rethink, reboot, and scale their social impact."

    Brechlin was instrumental in advocating for Connecticut's new benefit corporations law, and  as of October 2014 there were at least 30 companies filing paperwork at the Secretary of State's office to become benefit corporations. While as many as 26 other states are working to adopt benefit corporation laws, Connecticut is well ahead of the pack.

    What is a benefit corporation? 

    This unique corporate status gives companies legal advantages that allow them to function in a hybrid nonprofit/for-profit manner. 

    Unlike nonprofits, benefit corporations may not accept donations or tax exemptions like a normal nonprofit would do, but they are able to market as organizations that "do good" and are legally protected from shareholder lawsuits, freeing them from the pressure shareholders often place on corporations to put profit ahead of everything, even progress.

    Brechlin, a graduate of Eastern Connecticut State University, worked for Americorps Vista and Nonprofit Alliance of Northeastern Connecticut (NANC). More recently, he has been working to develop software tools for income, education and employment metrics in the city of Hartford. He now hopes to expand the reach of his innovations to other nonprofits.

    According to reSET public policy and impact investing specialist James Woulfe, organizations interested in becoming benefit corporations will likely already be involved in social missions or purpose. Connecticut organizations that need help and resources as they embark on this new territory can turn to reSET for help at http://www.socialenterprisetrust.org/.

    If you are a Connecticut company evaluating new accounting software, for your benefit corporation or non profit organization, contact CAL Business Solutions. 860-485-0910 x4 or [email protected]

    View our latest non profit client success story, HealthyCT, at www.calszone.com/nonprofit.

    Source: Benefit corporations prepare for launch

    By CAL Business Solutions, Connecticut Microsoft Dynamics GP Partner

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