The growth of community businesses is driven by attempts to rescue libraries, pubs and other local assets under threat from closure, according to research released by the independent trust Power to Change and the non-profit Social Finance.
The report found that the number of community businesses in England has grown by 5% in the last year, outstripping growth by both charities (1%) and small businesses (2.3%).
Community businesses are charities and other organisations run for and by local communities, which re-invest all surplus back into the local area.
The report found:
Written in conjunction with Big Society Capital and the Association for British Credit Unions, Building the case for social investment in credit unions looks at the potential for social investment to help grow the credit union sector. The report explores the opportunity within the landscape for social investment, how credit unions can make themselves more appealing to social investors and the benefits of investing in these organisations.