Social Entrepreneur Index Nominee: DivInc
Jay Richards, founder of DivInc, talks to us about his journey to becoming a social entrepreneur, the challenges he's faced along the way and how DivInc helps young people start their own businesses.
What does your social enterprise do?
DivInc helps underestimated young people to launch their own start-ups and gain investment
of up to £500k by inspiring, equipping and funding them.
What made you start your business up?
I was stuck in a cycle of robbery in high school, my business studies teacher helped me to
start my first business and that changed my whole life. I wanted to do what he did for me, but
on a larger scale!
How do you measure your impact?
We work with New Philanthropic Capital to measure our impact by conducting surveys with
our cohorts before, during and after our incubator.
What help did you have to start your social enterprise?
I am part of a Whatsapp group of black founders - this group has been invaluable!
How did you decide on what legal form would work best for your business?
I decided from the start that I didn’t want to rely on grants for the entirety of our existence, I
chose to be as CLS because it gave us the freedom to have our desired impact and also to
have a profitable business.
What’s the best thing about being a social entrepreneur?
Watching underestimated young people's lives change right in front of my eyes and knowing
that because of our business model it won’t be a fleeting change - we’re here to stay.
What has been your biggest challenge when setting up and running your social enterprise?
The lack of relevant funding, grants and investment are extremely tough to come by when
you’re “too profitable” for some grants but “too social” for some investors!
What advice would you give to aspiring social entrepreneurs?
Just get started, if you don’t do it then who will?
What information sources would you recommend to help someone just starting their social enterprise journey?
Listen to these podcasts:
Masters of scale
How I built this
Zero to IPO
Social Entrepreneur Index Nominee: DivInc 59Read:
The Power of unreasonable people
Steve Jobs bio
Elon Musk bio
What are your plans for the next 2-5 years?
By 2022 we will be impacting over 1.3 million young people every year.
By 2022 our first few cohorts will be scaling, becoming profitable and looking at possible exits.
By 2022 we will be generating £250k in MRR.
By 2022 our alumni will be angel investing into the next generation of underestimated entrepreneurs.