CIC Association

Serving Community Enterprise

Hi, I'm new in town and I hope someone can answer a question for me. But first, thank you for allowing me to join, I think this is the exact community I need and it appears very supportive. The CIC I'm starting will enable females to qualify as plumbers. The numbers of women in this industry is woefully low (0.4%) and greater support is needed to get through this old fashioned and still discriminatory minefield. Anyway, my question relates to the structure of my CIC. We propose two main directors and then some other board members. Could anyone advise as to how that board be best constructed and perhaps share their experience in this. I would be very grateful as I can't seem to find any definitive views on this. Thank you.

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Hey Hattie,

So a quick question, are you setting up as CIC limited by guarantee or share?

You only need one director for either, but if you are thinking of approaching grant funders, or even some 'social finance' like a loan, often they will require you to have 3 directors, so maybe think of bending one of your potential board members to become another director.

For your other board members, if you set this up as an advisory board, then it is simple as that. They won't have any legal position in decision making unless you change your articles (which are your company rules that you submit when you set up). It also means that this group of advisers can be as big or small as you like, and you won't need to insure them, and can assure them of no liability if everything goes wrong!

Hope this helps.

With all my best,


Thank you Matt. This does help enormously. After pouring over guidelines and company law websites and company structures we decided that the CIC would be limited by shares. I think we have found enough people to make it 5 on our board, we definitely have 3 directors so that's good. Please can you explain about insuring the directors. That's something I've not come across before.

Thank you again



Yeah sure - don't worry about it too much at this stage! I thought I might confuse you on that point.

When you are ready to get going, and need to get your business insurance together, public liability, stock, etc. etc. it will be something your broker will ask you about. It's a cover for if a director commits fraud for example, if director's are working with vunerable groups, etc. I wouldn't worry about it too much. You should be fine!

Thank you again Matt. We are about ready to go with our board. Our next objective is to find the right legal and financial people. Do you think this is the place where I might find those? I have only run 'for profit' businesses and I know my present accountant doesn't 'get' social enterprises and I want to make sure we are run with rigour.

Thanks again Matt.




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