Canadian Treasurer

March 13, 2014

BDC becomes the first financial institution in Canada to receive B Corp certification

MONTREAL--The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) is pleased to announce that it has become the first Canadian financial institution to receive B Corp certification and the 100th Canadian company to join the international B Corp community.

The "B" is for beneficial. To be certified, a company must meet comprehensive standards related to purpose, transparency and accountability that benchmark its economic, social and environmental performance against that of other businesses. People can use the B Corp certification when choosing a company to buy from, invest in or apply to.

There are currently almost 1,000 B Corp-certified companies in 60 industries in 32 countries. They are certified by B Lab, the non-profit organization that serves a global movement to redefine success in business so that companies compete not only to be the best in the world, but the best for the world. B Corps seek to use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems.

"B Corp certification is a natural fit for BDC; our exclusive dedication to entrepreneurs is beneficial to Canadian society," said Craig Ryan, Director, Corporate Social Responsibility, at BDC. "We're also proud to support the people who create social purpose firms, many of whom seek B Corp certification. We're confident our new status will help attract more of them as clients."

"We're thrilled BDC has joined the B Corp community," said Bart Houlahan, Cofounder, B Lab. "Their mission to help create and develop small and medium-sized enterprises fits entirely with spirit of B Corporations—using the power of business as a force for good."

Canada's business development bank, BDC puts entrepreneurs first. With almost 2,000 employees and more than 100 business centres across the country, BDC offers financing, subordinate financing, venture capital, securitization and consulting services to more than 28,000 small and medium-sized companies.

Certified B Corporations meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, legally expand their corporate responsibilities to include consideration of stakeholder interests, and build collective voice through the power of the unifying B Corporation brand. As of January 2014, there were more than 900 Certified B Corporations from more than 60 industries and 32 countries, representing a diverse multi-billion-dollar marketplace.

B Lab is a non-profit organization that serves a global movement to redefine success in business so that all companies compete not only to be the best in the world, but the best for the world. B Lab drives this systemic change through a number of interrelated initiatives: building a community of Certified B Corporations to make it easier for all of us to tell the difference between "good companies" and good marketing; passing legislation to accelerate growth of social entrepreneurship and impact investing (20 states have already passed benefit corporation legislation); developing B Analytics, a customizable platform for measuring, benchmarking and reporting on impact; and providing free, powerful tools for businesses to measure, compare, and improve their social and environmental performance (more than 15,000 businesses use B Lab's free B Impact Assessment).



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