18. Call Britannia

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Founder: Karen Darby
Website: www.callbritannia.com

Karen, who sold her last venture Simply Switch for £22m, insists there’s always got to be a social element to her businesses and it’s most apparent in Call Britannia. The call centre offers temporary work and training opportunities to the long term unemployed, the over 50s, the disabled or those with a criminal record. Her aim is to create 10,000 jobs and eventually roll the concept out to become a network of call centres all over the country. A percentage of company profits will go into a special foundation to help Call Britannia graduates once their position comes to an end. Backed by The Big Issue Invest and Bridges Ventures, the company will also reward the management team depending on how well it performs, offering a financial incentive for commercial success.

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