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Taxpayers taking the “risk” out of being an “entrepreneur”

The word entrepreneur has its uses, but is too often misused. Alan Sugar hit the nail on the head in The Apprentice last year when, exasperated, he said something along these lines to a contestant: “Entrepreneur is not something you can call yourself. It is for other people to describe you an an entrepreneur.”

This brings me to Belinda Bell self-styled “social entrepreneur” behind Suffolk Circle, a newly established business to befriend and help (at a price) over 50s in the county.

Collins dictionary defines an entrepreneur as, “The owner or manager of a business enterprise who,  by risk and initiative, attempts to make a profit.” Risk and profit are in all the definitions I have seen.

But where is the risk when Suffolk Circle has been given £3/4m over three years by Suffolk County Council to get itself established? It looks as if Suffolk County Council has taken over the risk on what looks like an uncertain business plan.

Suffolk Circle has been set up as a CIC (community interest company) which has to put profits back into the community and cannot be sold at a profit. But, I believe, salaries are not controlled.

There were allegations at the county council meeting last week that Suffolk Circle is duplicating work done by voluntary organisations which do not get anything like the same level of support.

Kathy Pollard, the Lib Dem leader on the council said on her blog after the council meeting that Suffolk Circle was duplicating the work of others. It seems this statement was challenged (off-line, I assume, as I cant see any comment on her previous post).

She has now blogged justifying the duplication claim in some detail which you can read on her blog.

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  1. On ‘parsimony and prodigality’— a view of Suffolk County Council says

    […] Circle has been given £3/4 million over three years (see my previous post Taxpayers taking the ‘risk” out of being an “entrepreneur”.) Share This:TweetFacebookStumbleUponDiggDelicious Posted in Local Government, Suffolk County […]

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    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Tweeter Channels, Journalism.co.uk. Journalism.co.uk said: [Andrew Grant-Adamson] Taxpayers taking the “risk” out of being an “entrepreneur” http://bit.ly/g4Uzb4 […]