Legal requirement for B Corps in Switzerland
31 March 2016
Companies wishing to become a Certified B Corp in Switzerland will need to have or adopt governing documents which include a commitment to a 'triple bottom line' approach to business.
In practice, for a typical business, this is likely to mean having an objects clause which states that it exists to promote the success of the business for the benefit of its shareholders but also to have a material positive impact on society and the environment. The governing documents of B Corps will also need to state that the board members of the company need to consider a range of 'stakeholder interests' - including shareholders, employees, suppliers, society and the environment - when making decisions and, critically, that shareholder value is not the supreme consideration but is one factor amongst the many stakeholder interests which board members need to take into account when running the business.
Following the adoption of these clauses in the bylaws of B Corp companies, Board members and directors of B Corps will have to take into account in their decision-making process the B Corp mission - the use of the power of business to solve social and environmental issues.