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3Form versus functionCHOOSING THE RIGHT STRUCTURE

Social enterprise leaders consistently report that finding the best legal structure for their ventures is among their very greatest challenges.

Indeed, it is almost impossible to discuss social enterprise without getting mucked up in the distinction between nonprofit and for-profit organizations. As you may have picked up from some of the definitions we quoted in the introduction to this book, some people in this field hold that the defining feature of a social enterprise is the income-generating commercial activity that supports the social mission of a nonprofit organization. This view is not without some underlying logic. After all, in a market system that awards divine rights to owners, ...

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