The Seoul Metropolitan Government aims to increase the number of social enterprises from 2000 to 4,000 in 2017, which means more jobs and social contribution for the socially vulnerable groups of women, seniors, and disabled.
The SMG has led the expansion and growth of social enterprises in the past five years through implementation of policies that provide financial support, consultations, and social investment funds with the goal of vitalizing social enterprises. As a result, the number of social enterprises increased fivefold from 718 in 2011 to 3,501 by the end of 2016.
In 2017, the SMG will invest a total of KRW 57.9 billion to support the “5 Plans to Support the Social Enterprises in 2017” and promote the growth of the social economy.
The five support plans include: ① Extended promotion of social enterprises (3,500→4,000) ② Expansion of the public purchase amount for Seoul’s social economy in order to expand the market (KRW 85.6 billion → KRW 100 billion) ③ Additional social investment in the private finance sector (KRW 10 billion) and introduction of citizen-participatory funds, ④ Infrastructural expansion of social economy areas, and ⑤ Reinforcement of the international network for the social economy sector.
First, through customized support in consideration of the characteristics of a company and stage of implementation, the SMG will reinforce the growth potential of social enterprises and promote an additional 500 social enterprises to create 2,000 new jobs. Also, it will designate 40 companies that received high ratings in finance stability and social contribution as model companies and support them for three years using customized programs.
Second, the SMG will expand upon the market for social enterprises. Public Purchase Amount, which is the mandatory purchase of social enterprises’s products or services by the SMG, autonomous districts, and investment and funding organizations, will be increased to KRW 100 billion (KRW 85.6 billion in 2016) in 2017.
Third, in 2017, in order to vitalize investment for social value, the operation method of social investment funds will change (Private consignment → Direct operation) and private funds (KRW 10 billion) will be added to expand the total funds to KRW 80 billion (KRW 70.2 billion in 2016). The first SMG’s social investment funds (KRW 50 billion) was created in 2012 for the first time among all local governments.
The SMG will also introduce Crowdfunding, where the general public can participate in the raising of funds, to connect citizens who are interested in investing in social enterprises with social enterprises that are seeking for new ways to procure capital.
Fourth, the SMG’s pioneering support infrastructure for the social economy will continue to expand. Leading examples include ▴expansion of social economy support centers (15 in 2016→20 in 2017) for each autonomous district, ▴reorganization of social economy activation space (11 in 2016→13 in 2017) which will be used as shared offices and training rooms for local social enterprises, and ▴formation of more social economy special districts (6 in 2016→10 in 2017) where the local community addresses local issues through cooperation.
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Lastly, the SMG will host various international events attended by young entrepreneurs and experts in socio-economic sectors worldwide to strengthen the global network and reinforce initiatives as a leading city of social economy. It will continue to host the “Asia Network for Young Social Entrepreneurs,” which it has been hosting since 2014, and newly launch the Social Economy Youth International Camp in 2017. In June 2017, the SMG will host the ‘ILO Academy on Social and Solidarity Economy’ to promote awareness of ‘Social Economy and Good Jobs.’