Using the power of business to create change
Did you know that the Untours Foundation owns the world’s first certified B Corp?
Not only was Untours the first company to certify as a B Corp, but Hal Taussig, founder of both Untours and the Untours Foundation, was part of the inspiration for the movement!
B Lab co-founder Jay Coen Gilbert was inspired by Hal Taussig’s commitment to sharing all of Untours profits with the foundation he created. He discovered Untours after the company won the recognition of Paul Newman’s foundation, who awarded them the title “Most Generous Company in America.”
Jay connected with Hal and was inspired by his simple living and commitment to social and economic justice. Jay and his partners Bart Houlahan and Andrew Kakssoy went on to set up the non-profit, B Lab, to design a certification for businesses that meets a host of progressive metrics, including commitments to their community, the planet, their staff and shareholders, and the greater good.
Untours was the first company to go through B Lab’s rigorous certification process and get the designation as a B Corp. They are now part of a large and growing global community of businesses working to set new standards for economic inclusion and sustainability.
B is short for Benefit Corporations. In filing as a benefit corporation, a company recognizes its stakeholders are shareholders PLUS employees, clients, suppliers, and the earth. This allows businesses to make important decisions for community and planetary gain that standard corporations, with pressure to return profits to shareholders, may not make.
B Lab has worked to make this type of socially minded business a legal entity. 34 states have approved such legislation and established a benefit corporation filing option
Untours travel is the world’s first B Corp and also a registered benefit corporation in Pennsylvania.
In recognition of Hal’s pioneering work, B Lab annually presents the Hal Taussig Award to a B Corp leader who is carrying on Hal’s legacy of using business for good.
Photo: Hal with two of the three B Lab co-founders, Bart Houlahan and Jay Coen Gilbert