Melanie J. Teplinsky
DANA BRAKMAN REISER
Over the past few years, jurisdictions across the country have enacted specialized organizational forms to house social enterprises. Social enterprises are entities dedicated to a blended mission of earning profits for owners and promoting social good. They are neither typical businesses, concentrated on the bottom line of profit, nor traditional charities, geared toward achieving some mission of good for society. Their founders instead see value in blending both goals.
J. WILLIAM CALLISON
In Greek myth, Procrustes, a bandit son of Poseidon, had a one-size-fits-all iron bed on which he invited passers-by to spend the night. Once his guests were asleep, he used his ironsmith’s hammer to stretch them to fit the bed. If a guest proved too tall, Procrustes would use shears to amputate the excess in order that the body would fit the bed. Ultimately, Theseus, who killed the Minotaur and escaped the Maze using Ariadne’s thread, killed Procrustes by compelling him to fit his own body to his bed.
J. HASKELL MURRAY
In the wake of the most recent financial crisis, interest in social enterprise has increased exponentially. Disillusioned with the perceived shareholder wealth focus of corporate law, entrepreneurs, investors, customers, and governments have become more receptive to new paradigms. In the past four years, nineteen states have passed at least one of five different types of social enterprise statutes and many additional states are considering similar legislation. Focusing primarily on the benefit corporation form, this Article examines three main issues: (1) whether social enterprise statutes are potentially useful; (2) how social enterprise law can be improved; and (3) whether the social enterprise movement will be sustainable.