Sir Richard Branson hosted a business summit where leaders were told they would be swept aside by social enterprises if they did not adapt. Photograph: Stephen Chernin/Getty Images
A gathering of sustainability leaders hosted by Sir Richard Branson and Jamie Oliver has been warned that big businesses will be swept aside by emerging social enterprises unless they start changing their business models and contribute more to society.
Boudewijn Poelmann, who founded the hugely successful Dutch Postcode Lottery, which now operates in Sweden and the UK, said that many major businesses would disappear over the next 20 years, to be replaced by emerging social enterprises, unless they took off their blinkers and responded to the environmental and social challenges the world is facing.
“Small companies that are passionate about creating change will take over if big companies do not adapt,” he said. “We already see that with energy, with so many small companies producing sustainable clean energy. The big companies are already starting to feel they are losing out.”