Why a Community Interest Company?
Simple really – we wanted to have a company structure that was nimble enough for us to work effectively yet was clearly not-for profit.
What is a CIC?
A CIC is a new type of company that is simpler to run than a charity, but still has to have a social purpose. To become a CIC we have to pass a “Community Interest Test” – where a regulator decides whether we are fulfilling a social purpose.
- must provide benefits to the community
- must keep its community in touch with its activities
- only use its assets and surpluses for the community specified
- undertakes to complete similar administration as a Limited Company
- must not have any political aims
What does this mean for Taking Pictures, Changing Lives?
- we are committed to running the business ethically
- we will be transparent with you and clearly show any fees we receive from suppliers
- the assets the company might make are “asset locked” – this means that they belong to the not-for-profit sector and cannot be withdrawn by us for our personal gain.
- investors in the company can only take a small proportion of any profits as dividends … so any investment with us is a social rather than financial investment
- We will consult you on how we should spend any surpluses
Official definition of a CIC
“A Community Interest Company (CIC) is a limited company, with special additional features, created for the use of people who want to conduct a business or other activity for community benefit, and not purely for private advantage.” (Source)
Find out more about CICs
The CIC Association has information and support for Community Interest Companies and is a great place to go to find out more and get advice from other members.
Offical information from the CIC regulator