iSE | Supporting Buy Social

Buying from social enterprise is one way in which we can do more to grow the sector and create greater social impact. Find out how we have been working to support businesses to spend socially in the second city.

From March 2020 iSE worked alongside SEUK to grow the Buy Social initiative in the

From March 2020 iSE worked alongside SEUK to grow the Buy Social initiative in the city of Birmingham, brokering routes to corporate supply chains for social enterprises through a series of online ‘Meet the Buyer’ events, training for buyers and online marketplaces.

Over project lifespan we successfully engaged with over 100 social enterprises to establish their capacity and capability to work with corporate clients, focussing on supplying to the construction and professional services sectors.

We developed relationships with projects relating to the The Alexander Stadium Redevelopment and HS2 to establish clear forward potential workstreams for relevant social enterprises. We have developed buyer relationships with a number of high-profile names including the Birmingham Anchor Institution Network, Birmingham City University, McLaughlin and Harvey, The Commonwealth Games, Gowling amongst others.

In November 2020 we ran a marketplace with 7 relevant social enterprises and 20 interested buyers. This involved introductions, explanation of social value and benefits of working with social enterprises.

In March 2021 we ran a professional services Meet the Buyer / marketplace with a mixture of organisations and buyers. We led 2 specific training events aimed at the suppliers working on The Alexander Stadium Redevelopment for the forthcoming Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

Our work resulted in 64 direct introductions totalling nearly £2 million, with confirmed engagements totalling approximately 385k of new sector spend through supply chain opportunities and brokerage and 37 buyers trained directly and within 2nd tier supply chains trained on social procurement.

We are exceptionally proud of our achievements and consider that some of the wins are spectacular, allowing buyers and social enterprises to significantly build Social Value now and in the future.