The Hub: amplifying impact

A social enterprise hub creating jobs and opportunity in the heart of Melbourne

Melbourne’s first ever social enterprise hub

The new (Melbourne) Social Enterprise Village, which will be launched in the last quarter of 2021, brings together several innovative social enterprises in Australia.

Located in Flinders St, on the northern banks of the Yarra, the Village will bring a previously neglected corner of Melbourne to life. 

Bike riding commuters will be able to drop their bike off for servicing or pick up a spare tube on the way to work at the Good Cycles shop. Those wanting a healthy start to the day can pick up a banana or apple to put on their desk at work – or stock up the community fruit basket – from The Community Grocer.

Entrepreneurs who want to start their own social enterprise but don’t have the financial or social capital to get going, can come and visit Dragonfly Collective for mentoring, coaching and business support. Meanwhile, Moral Fairground will be hosting events, fairs and networking events to create a dynamic space that people will want to visit. Also joining the village will be SENVic, who will be promoting the wonderful work of Victorian social enterprises to the wider Victorian population, as well as Government.

Finally, passers by will likely see Good Cycles ecargo bikes coming and going as they visit the Village depot for lunch and to pick up supplies for their afternoon’s work, cleaning car share cars, inspecting solar bins and a range of other asset maintenance activities for business and government.

The project delivers activation and revitalisation to the site located underneath the train line at the intersection of Flinders Street and Queens Bridge Street. This area provides a central setting for building ‘place-based’ activation from the ground up.

By taking a collaborative approach we can, together, raise the profile and visibility of social enterprise in Victoria.

The Social Enterprise Village is one of the first of its kind and is expected to achieve a number of goals in the coming years, including:

  • Up to 800 jobs for young people of disadvantage
  • A showcase for what social enterprise can achieve for the economy as well as the community
  • A vibrant space which will encourage the start up of new social enterprises; 
  • An innovator in active transport as we do our bit to create a more sustainable city.

Partners

We are thrilled to advise that the following enterprises will be joining us to operate in the Social Enterprise Village.

Onwards, Upwards

It is estimated that the Hub will create 800 transitional employment opportunities with social enterprise employers for people who experience disadvantage in the labour market across the first eight years of the project.

The estimated value created by the Hub in the first year of its operation is $4.6 million. Some of the value repeats in every year of operation. The value created by the Hub across its first eight-years is estimated at $39 million.

The potential value is broken down into 4 key areas:

The prominent city centre location increases the visibility of social enterprises, leading to improved understanding of the business model. This could catalyse the expansion of the social enterprise sector, leading to improved social and policy outcomes for Melbourne and Victoria.

A wide range of employment opportunities will be created for people who are disadvantaged in the labour market, including support to enable people to transition into mainstream employment. These transitional employment opportunities mean that the social value created is not a one-off but repeated each year through the Hub model.

Activation of a currently under-utilised location can drive inclusive economic development and enhance Melbourne’s identity as a diverse and socially inclusive city.

The Hub will serve as a central operation base for our innovative City Logistics division. Powered by eCargo bikes, we offer efficient, productive, and low-impact commercial solutions for city bound deliveries and maintenance services.

Sustainable social enterprise

Since 2017, Good Cycles has successfully maintained its strategic 80/20 revenue model, with more than 80% of annual revenue derived from its commercial operations. Good Cycles reinvests 100% of profits back into its mission: providing young Victorians at risk of disengagement with employment opportunities that improve their futures. The remaining revenue is largely made up of philanthropic funding with the balance from donations and government grants. This funding is critical to the ability to scale business and in turn, support and provide valuable employment opportunities and partnerships.

Good Cycles is dually focused on delivering both social impact and commercial sustainability. Success is measured by continuing to provide paid employment and support for at-risk youth. In a few short years, we have reached commercial sustainability with over 80% of our revenue coming from commercial activities.

With 100% of our profits going to support our mission, the past 12 months has seen our outcomes continue to grow.

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Connected 66 young people facing barriers to employment to support networks in their community
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Trainees into employment
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Program participants
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Supported 54 young people to meet 110 professional goals and 46 well-being goals
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Assisted 36 young people to strengthen their resumé
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Covered 11,701 km by E-bike to provide waste management services, saving 3447kg of carbon dioxide emissions

Good Cycles has established itself as a key influencer in Victoria’s social enterprise sector. Together with other leading social enterprises, the site will set a new, exciting stage for the development of social enterprise in Victoria.

This project is an opportunity for Melbourne to continue its influence in the growing global social enterprise sector. It will provide a tangible example of the power of social enterprise to create inclusive social and economic development, and a model for increasing the scale at which social enterprise can operate.

Contributing partners

We are indebted to the following organisations and government entities, whose support in helping to bring the Hub to life has been invaluable.

Do you want to get involved?

We’re always looking to hear from new supporters & organisations interested in contributing to this exciting new venture.
For more information on joining us in this initiative, contact our Commercial Manager Gordon Oakley