Subsidiaries, franchises, and companies with related entities may pursue B Corp Certification, with certain limits. Subsidiaries of publicly-traded companies also must meet additional transparency requirements.
B Corp Certification is based in part on a company's verified performance on the B Impact Assessment, which asks questions about a company's past fiscal year. This means that companies with less than one year of operations are not yet eligible for B Corp Certification. Instead, they may pursue Pending B Corp status, designed to set a start-up on the path to full Certification.
Certified B Corporations pay an annual certification fee, which licenses them to use intellectual property like the Certified B Corp logo. This fee starts as low as $500 and scales with revenue. You can see the full pricing schedule on the Certification page. Access to the B Impact Assessment is free. Your company may also be subject to additional costs depending on size and structure.
Yes! There's no minimum size for B Corp Certification. Your company size will influence the questions you have to answer on the B Impact Assessment to meet the performance requirement for Certification.
The length of the certification process varies based on a company's size and complexity. Completing the B Impact Assessment requires a minimum of several hours. The verification process to finalize a company's score typically takes from several weeks to a few months. Large multinationals or companies with many related entities should expect a longer process.
Any for-profit company with at least a year of operations may pursue B Corp Certification. There is no minimum or maximum size. Certain companies, such as those under a year old, those with related entities, or large multinational and public companies, have additional considerations and requirements.
All Certified B Corps must meet a legal accountability requirement to maintain Certification. Your company's legal requirement will vary based on your location and structure. Find your specific requirement using our Legal Requirement tool.
B Lab takes complaints seriously and appreciates those who come forward with them. Material complaints are overseen by B Lab's independent Standards Advisory Council. Learn more about our complaints process.
All Certified B Corps share their B Impact Assessment overall scores and category scores on their public profiles on bcorporation.net. Public companies and their subsidiaries have extra transparency requirements and make their entire B Impact Assessment public, with particularly sensitive information like revenue redacted. Companies that have material items, such as lawsuits, on their Disclosure Questionnaire may also be required to make that disclosure transparent as well. Learn more about the certification requirements.
The B Impact Assessment examines a company's impact on their workers, community, environment, and customers. The BIA also asks questions about a company's governance structure and accountability. Questions are split into to categories: Operations, which covers a company's day-to-day activities, and Impact Business Models, which awards additional points for business models designed to create additional positive impact. The B Impact Assessment is updated every year to incorporate feedback and improve upon the standards. Learn more about the performance requirements for Certification.
B Lab launched the QIA in 2015 to give companies an introduction to commonly used sustainability and impact measures, and provide them with a “warm up lap” before progressing to the full B Impact Assessment (BIA). After exploring how companies and partners used the QIA we found it did not meet the needs of B Lab’s diverse and growing community or align with our continued priority to support comprehensive and holistic impact management tools to companies. Companies will no longer be able to make changes to their QIA beginning December 18, 2019. Companies that have used the QIA in the past will continue to have access to their historic QIAs through their account on bimpactassessment.net.
The standards for B Corp Certification are overseen by B Lab's independent Standards Advisory Council. Members of the Standards Advisory Council bring industry and stakeholder expertise to bear during the three-year update cycle for the B Impact Assessment, complaints made against Certified B Corps, and material disclosures made by companies pursuing B Corp Certification.
Each year B Lab releases lists of the Certified B Corps with scores in the top 10% of the community, broken down by size and impact area, called the Best for the World Lists. Check out the 2018 Best for the World honorees!
Benefit corporations and Certified B Corporations are often confused. The B Corp Certification is a third-party certification administered by the non-profit B Lab, based in part on a company's verified performance on the B Impact Assessment. The benefit corporation is a legal structure for a business, like an LLC or a corporation. Benefit corporations are legally empowered to pursue positive stakeholder impact alongside profit. Some companies are both Certified B Corporations and benefit corporations, and the benefit corporation structure fulfills the legal accountability requirement of B Corp Certification. Learn more about the difference.
In 2006, three friends left careers in business and private equity and created an organization dedicated to making it easier for mission-driven companies to protect and improve their positive impact over time. The first 82 B Corps were certified in 2007.
B Corp Certification isn't a perfect fit for every organization. Nonprofits, large multinationals, governmental organizations and companies of all sectors and sizes can join the B Economy by using B Lab's impact management and stakeholder governance tools.
The B Corp community reflects the world's business landscape, ranging from sole proprietors to publicly-traded companies. The majority of the 2,500+ B Corps are small businesses. Multinationals are engaging the global B Economy both through B Corp Certification and other engagements with B Lab.
B Corp Certification is administered by Standards Analysts at the non-profit B Lab. Standards Analysts are located at B Lab's Pennsylvania, New York, and Amsterdam offices. The standards for B Corp Certification are overseen by B Lab's independent Standards Advisory Council.