B Lab, the nonprofit that created the sustainable business certification system for B Corporations, has released a number of lists of companies that it considers "Best For the World.” Collectively they form an A-list of the companies B Lab calls the “rockstars of the new economy.”
B Lab released the list this week in conjunction with its 2012 annual report.
The firms represent the top 10 percent of the 500 companies that have been certified and registered as B Corporations based on B Lab's "B Impact" assessment tool and third-party authentication process.
The ratings are based on information the companies filed to the nonprofit in B Impact Assessment reports. B Lab used then used a point system to rate each firm's overall governance, how it treats its workers, how it contributes to the community and its environmental impact.
“These companies are the best in the world at being the best for the world,” Jay Coen Gilbert, co founder of B Lab, said in a statement.
There are four "Best For" categories -- overall impact, environment, community and workers.
The firms that made the top 10 percent in the overall impact category are:
- Better World Books
- Global Green Energy Corp
- Green Building Services
- Larry’s Beans
- Moving Forward Education
- Namaste Solar
- New Resource Bank
- Next Street
- Partnership Capital Growth
- Piedmont Biofuels
- PREM Group
- Re:Vision Architecture
- South Mountain Company
- Southern Energy Management
- SQA Pharmacy Services
- The Redwoods Group
- Virginia Community Capital.
In addition, six companies landed in the top 10 percent in multiple categories. They are:
- Namaste Solar in the environment and workers categories
- Re:Vision Architecture, environment and workers
- Change.org, community and workers
- PeaceWorks Technology Solutions, community and workers
- Thedatabank, community and workers
- Ecovations, environment and community
Many of the companies listed are well known to GreenBiz.com readers; some aren’t. But innovative business practices aimed a societal benefit is a common thread among them.
Better World Books, for example, uses a share of its profits from selling second hand books to fund literacy programs. New Resource Bank specializes in financing for cleantech and sustainable companies (disclosure: GreenBiz is among its clients). PeaceWorks Technology is a computer consultancy that serves social justice organizations (nonprofit and for-profit) as well as small, family-owned businesses.
The annual report shows how the "Best For" companies rate against the larger pool of 2,000 companies that have taken the B Lab's B Impact Assessment but have not gone on to become a certified B Corp.
"Only the B Corps go through a certification process, to verify the information provided in the assessment tool," explains B Lab's Hardik Savalia, who manages company certifications. "That's why we've not included those 2,000 firms in these lists."
The lists and B Lab’s annual report are available at http://www.bcorporation.net
Photo of jewel tree in the spot light via Shutterstock.com.