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A new research report by Social Value Lab has been released today which explores the scale, characteristics and contribution of social enterprises in Glasgow.

Carried out on behalf of Glasgow Social Enterprise Network (GSEN), the research provides one of the most comprehensive analyses yet of what makes social enterprise tick and the contribution it makes.

Formally launched at a reception hosted by GSEN today at the EVH building in Glasgow, the research has revealed some important headline numbers:

  • 509 social enterprises currently operating in Glasgow
  • 42% located in the poorest neighbourhoods of the city
  • £767m annual income collectively
  • 51% of social enterprises generating half or more of their income from trade
  • £2.23bn in assets held by social enterprises
  • 39% of social enterprises now delivering services under contract
  • 13,200 jobs supported by Glasgow’s social enterprises
  • 56% of social enterprise negatively affected by the financial climate last year.

For some the research has confirmed the significance of social enterprises to Scotland, including John Swinney (Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth) who quoted the headline numbers earlier this year at the UK Social Enterprise Exchange conference.

Commenting on the research, Jonathan Coburn (Director, Social Value Lab), commented:

“This has been an enormously challenging but significant piece of work which, for the first time, has revealed the true scale and significance of social enterprise activity in the city. For me it tells the story of an important group of enterprises that have grown up largely beneath the radar, but which now touch on the lives of Glasgow citizens in very many ways. The evidence shows clearly that it is possible to do business in a fairer and more inclusive way; one that always puts people before profit.”

Read our case study about the project and access the full report here.

For further information about the project contact Jonathan Coburn, Director, Social Value Lab at or on 0141 530 1479.

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