5 promising social enterprises to watch out for

You know the country’s future will be in better hands when the next generation gets more passionate about nation building. Social entrepreneurship is very much alive, and we can be sure it will remain that way as more young people start socially responsible businesses early in their lives.

BPI Foundation has chosen five best social enterprises that are being built by university students. Together with the Ateneo Center for Social Entrepreneurship, the foundation recently concluded its BPI Sinag U Business Challenge 2016.

BPI Sinag U is a national competition tapping qualified students from universities across the nation in search for social businesses with the most potential. The competition aims to empower, inspire, and capacitate students who are interested to become social entrepreneurs.

This year, students from 31 universities submitted enterprise ideas and presented their business plans before a panel of judges. The top five social enterprise proposals are set to gain a yearlong mentorship support and seed funding to make sure their concepts will turn into real social businesses.

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“BPI Foundation believes in harnessing the imagination and passion of the youth to develop more relevant and innovative business models,” said BPI Foundation Executive Director Faye Corcuera. “Through the guidance, tools, and network BPI Sinag U provides, young entrepreneurs can now transform their ideas into viable and sustainable social enterprises.”

BPI Sinag U is a category within the annual BPI Sinag Challenge, which supports social enterprises of businesses with social mission. Aside from BPI Sinag U, the competition is also known for its BPI Sinag Accelerate for social enterprises that are ready for an actual scale-up.

This year, BPI Sinag U awardees are the following:

BMB Solutions – a business that manufactures modular pedal-powered machines with a bicycle base that facilitates electric generation and water filtration.

Recycled E-nnovative Diaper Brick (RED Brick) – makes alternative bricks that can be used for construction and gardening purposes. RED Bricks are cheaper, more eco-friendly, and stronger compared to regular bricks available in the market today.

Bambulig – produces dehumidifying and deodorizing products made of charcoal. Those absorb excess moisture and indoor pollution, regulate humidity, and prevent formation of molds, mildew, fungus, and allergens. The business gives added livelihood to Ilonggos, particularly women in Alimodan and out-of-school youth in Jaro.

Blue Link – an online portal serving as a community for matching technical experts (blue collar workers) directly to service seekers.

Knapp – provides online crowd-sourcing logistics service facilitating ordering of food online that will eventually be delivered by local habal-habal (motorcycle) riders. This way, those partner-drivers can increase their income, leading the way to improved living in peri-urban communities.

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