Maine B. Corporations- The Future of Purpose-Driven Economics

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Anyone familiar with the State of Maine understands that Mainers take pride in the beauty of the outdoors, the support of local communities and businesses, prioritizing environmental sustainability and ethical operations. Maine is built off of a rich history of rocky coast, sea-faring pioneers; animal-loving residents; hiking; sailing; biking; camping; tourism; retail; hospitality and food and beverage. 

Maine residents and businesses care deeply about the local community and environment and this means considering social, political, and environmental impact in business and consumer practices. This is why becoming a B Corporation in Maine can be a meaningful differentiating factor for businesses looking to conduct for-profit operations at the same time as contributing to a better community in Maine. 

Examples of successful B Corporations in Maine:

Allagash Brewing CompanyMaineWorks, LLC
Androscoggin BankNarrative Food
Bristol SeafoodConvenientMD
Tom’s of MaineLuke’s Lobster
Wicked Joe & Wicked LeafRedbird Media Group
ReVision Energy InciBec Creative

Examples of successful B Corporations outside of Maine:

Ben & Jerry’sSeventh Generation
Dr. Bronner’sWarby Parker
Traditional MedicinalsKing Arthur Baking Company
BurtonGarden of Life LLC

What does it mean to be a B Corporation in Maine?

B corporations are for-profit companies certified by B Lab (a non-profit organization) for meeting heightened standards for social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability to all of their stakeholders. B Corps exist as a growing movement to use businesses as a force for good- these businesses can still emphasize doing more good and less harm, but also be profitable at the same time. Unlike traditional entities, B Corps are legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on all stakeholders: customers, workers, communities and the environment (rather than just equity-holders).

Why does B Corp Certification Matter?

Being a certified B Corp means you can display the following logo: 

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It also means that consumers are on notice of a business’s dedication to being a force for good in the community; it’s a powerful tool to build trust, credibility and value for your business and to encourage the community to invest in your products or services, knowing that the business gives back to the community in a tangible and measurable way. It’s not only potentially beneficial and enticing to consumers, but there is also a movement towards impact investment domestically and globally around the world. Thus, this not only is good for the local community, the broader community, and the global community, but also is good for business. As Allagash Brewing comments at Maine B Corps

Allagash has always been committed to supporting our employees, enriching our community, caring for our environment, and continuing to brew high-quality beer. We considered becoming a B Corp because we’re always looking for ways to improve how our brewery operates. The entire certification process helped us qualify and quantify what we were already committed to doing, and continues to help us grow as a brewery and a business and use beer as a force for good. We’re really proud to have been the first brewery in Maine to earn the B Corp designation.

How does a company get certified in Maine?

In order to become a certified B Corporation you use B Lab’s B Impact Assessment and a benefit corporation governance structure. Instead of operating under the premise of shareholder primacy, B Corps consider a broader impact as relates to their governance structure, known as stakeholder governance or benefit governance. This is intended to ensure that the businesses that are certified are required to consider interests of more than just shareholders and instead benefits all of the stakeholders, including customers, workers, suppliers, communities, investors and the environment as part of their core governance. While a B corporation may be a benefit corporation, it is not required to be a benefit corporation (the two are often confused, but one way to commit to being legally accountable to all of the requirements for certification is to become a benefit corporation). 

How Rogoway Law can help?

Whether or not you decide to become a benefit corporation, or simply decide to revise or reorganize or set up your governance structure to qualify for B Corp certification from B Lab, we can assist in preparing the governance documents and helping you pass your B Impact Assessment. We can help provide resources, information and insight to the process of receiving B Corp certification; can draft your legal governance and formation documents and business plans to assist in a successful legal structure that meets B Lab’s stringent requirements. We can also help keep you in compliance with B Corp requirements, and in renewing your status as a B Corp.

At Rogoway Law, we are happy to be able to assist companies in making a positive impact on the community, the planet and people more generally. Get in touch with us today for a complimentary consultation and let’s discuss how we can help your business with B Corp Certification from B Lab.

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