Businesses that earned top scores on the B Impact Assessment are being celebrated today with the announcement of B Lab’s 2018 “Best for the World” lists. B Lab simultaneously released separate lists recognizing Certified B Corporations in the top 10 percent for overall score, as well as in the categories for environment, customers, governance, community and workers.
Honoree companies earned placement on one or more of the six possible Best for the World lists, which B Lab claims are the only lists of businesses that use comprehensive, comparable, third-party-validated data about a company’s social and environmental performance. The full B Impact Assessment evaluates a company’s environmental performance, employee relationships, diversity, involvement in the local community, the impact a company’s product or service has on those it serves, and more. To certify as a B Corporation, a company must complete the full assessment and have their answers verified by B Lab.
“With the rise of anger at a system that feels rigged, and distrust in business at an all time high, people are hungry for companies who are changing the system by building businesses that seek to create the greatest positive impact,” said Jay Coen Gilbert, managing partner of B Lab. “As consumers, talent and investors increasingly demand transparent, values-aligned businesses to buy from, work at and invest in, companies will need to not just be best in the world but the best for the world. Not just to be nice, but to be the most successful.”
Nearly 1,000 of the more than 2,500 Certified B Corporations around the world were recognized among the 2018 honorees, representing more than 100 industries across 52 countries including the U.S., U.K., Denmark, India, South Africa and Taiwan.
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The companies with an overall score on the B Impact Assessment in the 10th percentile were named 2018 Best For The World: Overall Honorees. Thirteen companies were named to this list alone, while 218 were named to the overall list as well as at least one other. Among these, Patagonia earned spots on the overall, community and environment lists; food company Alter Eco earned spots on the same as well as for governance; and past SBIO semi-finalist eKutir was recognized for its overall and customer performance.
The other lists focused on specific categories:
- Best For The World: Environment list: The Environment portion of the B Impact Assessment evaluates a company’s environmental performance through its facilities, materials, emissions, and resource and energy use. It extends to their transportation/distribution channels and the environmental impact of their supply chain, as well as considers whether a company’s products or services are designed to solve an environmental issue, including products that aid in the provision of renewable energy, conserve resources, reduce waste, promote land/wildlife conservation, prevent toxic/hazardous substance or pollution, or educate, measure or consult to solve environmental problems.
- Best For The World: Customers list: The Customer portion of the B Impact Assessment measures the impact a company has on its customers by focusing on whether a company sells products or services that promote public benefit and if those products/services are targeted toward serving underserved populations. The section also measures whether a company’s product or service is designed to solve a social or environmental issue (improving health, preserving environment, creating economic opportunity for individuals or communities, promoting the arts/sciences, or increasing the flow of capital to purpose-driven enterprises).
- Best For The World: Governance list: The Governance section of the B Impact Assessment evaluates a company’s overall mission, ethics, accountability and transparency. It measures whether the company has adopted a social or environmental mission, and how it engages its employees, board members and the community to achieve that mission. This section assesses employee access to financial information, customers’ opportunities to provide feedback, and the diversity of the company’s governing bodies.
- Best For The World: Community list: The Community portion of the B Impact Assessment evaluates a company’s supplier relations, diversity, and involvement in the local community. It also measures the company’s practices and policies around community service and charitable giving, including whether a company’s product or service is designed to solve a social issue, such as access to basic services, health, education, economic opportunity and the arts.
- Best For The World: Workers list: The Workers section of the B Impact Assessment assesses the company’s relationship with its workforce. It measures how the company treats its workers through compensation, benefits, training and ownership opportunities provided to workers. The category also focuses on the overall work environment within the company by assessing management/worker communication, job flexibility, corporate culture, and worker health and safety practices.
This fall, B Lab will release further Best for the World lists honoring top-performing funds and companies making the most positive change over time.