Joining Trend, WI Creates New Business Entity: Benefit Corporations

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shareholders’ interests should always come first. He believes that the key to growing a successful business is putting employees first, customers second, and shareholders third—the logic being that all parties will benefit under this model.

Apple CEO Tim Cook is also calling on businesses to become better stewards of society and the environment. In a recent interview with The New York Times, he expressed frustration with government gridlock and suggested that businesses need to be more proactive in areas where the government has stalled. “I think we have a moral responsibility to help grow the economy, to help grow jobs, to contribute to this country, and to contribute to the other countries that we do business in,” Cook said.

Whether they realize it or not, Bertolini, Branson, and Cook are all calling for business practices that reflect a benefit corporation business model. These new entities stand for the idea that businesses, in the long run, are only as strong as the people and communities they serve and on which they depend. Our current model of capitalism has denied too many Americans a fair share of the nation’s wealth creation and economic prosperity. Benefit corporations seek to bridge the gap.

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Abigail Barnes is the co-founder and CEO of Allergy Amulet, a Madison, WI-based startup. Follow @allergyamulet

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