CIC Association

Serving Community Enterprise

Securing Public Contracts - CIC's are the future

Who can you trust?

Who really cares?

What difference can one company make?


The public spending deficit continues to concern people all over the world, soveriegn debt is now being passed on to our grandchildren, therefore our generation is in need of a simple solution and CIC's can provide the cornerstone of that solution.

As more and more services are placed in the private and third sectors the public have become aware that they are putting hard earned taxes into the pockets of shareholders so their cynicism is increasing, the expectation is of falling standards, poor service and greater cost.

So how are CIC's the solution? The government talks of the Big Society - social responsibility and localism these are great opportunities for CIC's. Europe is looking the same direction, organisations designed to provide services that invest in communities, developing the skills and products of a networked and integrated society that will maintain and improve the basic standards of living across the age groups and social sectors.

Next year 2012/13 the UK will spend more than £220 billion on public services given that health, education and social welfare are large parts of that expenditure, all services based on ethical and inclusive provision the CIC is the natural structure to meet the end user needs and government standards. Yes we pay reasonable wages, but there should be no fat cats, we invest in the future and again no asset reduction, we invest in human resources and blend technology.

The government target is 25% of all public sector spending to go through SME's but consider if the CIC's looked at ethical trading values, presented the governance skills and provided the right products 10% of that annual spend is achievable.

When you expand that to the £1,600 billion accross the EU and it will grow as more savings are required of government austerity 10% of those funds would address some of the most pressing social and economic issues society faces.


Can SME's and CIC's attract that funding? In the UK the number of successful contracts let to SME's is growing and will continue to grow as the real value of low overheads, local stakeholders and progressive quality are demonstrated in the service.

Working with one local SME has created a public sector saving twice the size they had planned for because they are not paying for a level of management who do nothing and shareholders who have to recieve and annual payment.


If you make one business new years resolution - let it be that you work to secure at least one public sector contract.


Last year in 6 months I worked on £238,000,000 worth of public sectors contracts with SME's, in that competitive environment £170,000,000 is now in their hands over the next three years. This year the numbers continue to grow. So I encourage you to set a reasonable target and have a go, you will learn a great deal about your business and the value others place on energy, integrity and ethical business practices.


Thanks for reading this

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Comment by Jeff Mowatt on February 27, 2013 at 12:23

Hi Mark, we have engaged in the past on Ecademy. As I was just relating in commenting this morning on an article about late payment in the public sector, our revenue in social enterprise derived from a mix of private, local government and government department contracts acquired prior to becoming a social enterprise. I related those remaining are by far the most reluctant to pay their bills. Is their any point in serving the public sector when they in effect become a charitable beneficiary. 

I described elsewhere how this began with a model of business for social purpose, disttibuting no dividend which we introduced to government in 2004.   



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