Who has never asked that question (about 1000 times): what is makesense’ business model? Well, now is the moment to discover how it works!

makesense’ business model and activities

Since it was created, makesense has always been a community of volunteers and social entrepreneurs committed to shaping a more sustainable and inclusive society. To fulfil this mission, and to enable all those who wish to engage in these new models of society to do so, the makesense association has developed several complementary activities that are grouped within the “makesense ecosystem”:

Animating, training and accompanying communities of volunteers, present all over the world.
We want to enable them to get involved in initiatives and have their entourage join, to support social entrepreneurs.

This activity includes – on an international level – the development of event and training formats, the construction of training manuals, the action of “Community Developers” who animate the community and answer everyone’s questions, constantly renewing the platform and its functionalities, communicating on social networks, kickstarting partnerships…

Professional guidance for social entrepreneurs, from the emergence of their projects to their development.
This activity is being developed through makesense incubators in France, Mexico, Senegal and the Philippines. The support is done through programs for the emergence, incubation and acceleration of social entrepreneurs. In addition to these incubators, the team is developing a platform of free online resources that can be accessed by social entrepreneurs around the world.

Coaching private companies and public institutions (ministries, local authorities, etc.) through their transformation to increase their positive impact on society and the environment.
This accompaniment takes two forms:

_Dedicated mentoring for internal teams on their social and environmental impact strategy.

_General mentoring to foster collaboration between these institutions and our community of social entrepreneurs.

In order to be faithful to the social enterprise model, since its creation, the makesense association has wanted to have a viable economic model so as not to depend on subsidies.

Each of the above-mentioned activities generates revenue through partnerships and services. With regard to the community’s animation and training activity, the sources of income are as follows.

Sources of funding of the community activity

Thematic programs in partnership organizations
At makesense, we believe that everything is interconnected. It is therefore essential to accelerate engagement and collaboration between citizens, social entrepreneurs and private and public organizations to solve together the great challenges of our time.

To do so, we develop programs to train and mobilize the community on specific issues and facilitate collaboration between citizens and other stakeholders. Funded by partner companies and institutions, these programs enable us to keep the community live on a daily basis.

Among these programs are:

_Future of Waste, in support of the circular economy, in partnership with SUEZ

_Energies for Climate, for a fair and collective energy transition, in partnership with EDF

_Kicking Cancer, to provide solutions to the social challenges of cancer, in partnership with many institutions engaged in the fight against cancer

Public and foundation grants (19% in 2018)
Beyond companies, many public and philanthropic actors believe in our model and support us in developing our activities. These actors provide us with financial resources but also with enormous support and increased credibility. This allows us to develop an important part of our model.

Our public and philanthropic funders:

_The city of Paris,

_The Lunt Foundation, which has been supporting us for 6 years on several projects: the digital platform, the implementation of governance, etc.

_The Fondation des Cèdres (in Lebanon),

_A duo of Swiss philanthropists (in the Philippines),

_The Bill & Melinda Gates foundation (2019 – funding the platform),

_The SAP foundation…

Solidarity financing
Finally, the community at the heart of the model is the only activity that is not self-financing.

It is jointly and solidarily financed by the income from other activities – 8% is used to finance the activities related to the community. Beautiful, isn’t it?

Sources of funding for the other activities

The support activity for entrepreneurs provided by the incubator is funded in different ways, depending on the country.
In France, the incubator is self-financing by sponsorship partnerships with companies, public subsidies (in particular the city of Paris), as well as services to develop tailor-made programmes to support entrepreneurs or set up skills sponsorship programmes.

In Senegal, the incubator is funded by the French Development Agency. In Mexico, the incubator is funded by corporations such as Veolia and Citibanamex.

Finally, in the Philippines, the incubator is funded by both philanthropists and companies. 

makesense’ activity of accompanying companies is composed of several types of services. The economic model is that of service provision: companies pay for each mission.

There are three types of missions:

_Accompanying internal innovation in corporations through intrapreneurship.

_Accompanying their commitment by creating internal communities.

_Facilitating workshops and team building seminars.

Profits are always reinvested in other makesense activities.

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