Triodos Bank winner of the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise

Social banking pioneers, Triodos Bank, have won the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise, it was announced in London today. Triodos were winners in the sustainable development category, for the bank’s groundbreaking work providing practical ways to make money benefit people and the environment.

Managing Director, Charles Middleton, believes the award is evidence of an emerging trend among UK consumers who want to see their money benefit both themselves and the wider world. “Thousands of people are choosing to take control of their money and use it in positive ways,” he said. “And to be one of the Queen’s Award winners recognises the role Triodos Bank has played for this increasingly influential movement – a community of ordinary people who care about the impact of their saving and spending decisions and who realise that they don’t have to lose out financially sticking to their principles.”

“We used to attract a relatively small and dynamic group of savers and investors who were passionate about social and environmental issues. These supporters have stayed with us and inspired us going forward. Now, by staying true to a strong social and environmental mission, we’ve started to attract customers from a much wider part of society as these kinds of issues have started to impact more generally on the mainstream. This award is welcome recognition for the work of Triodos Bank, but more importantly for the thousands of savers and hundreds of social entrepreneurs across the country who we work with.”

Triodos Bank only lends money to businesses and charities delivering positive change – from fairtrade organisations like Cafédirect serving mass markets, to small charities delivering local services in rural communities. The bank’s savers deposit money in a range of savings accounts and are assured that their money will be lent exclusively to companies and charities benefiting people and the environment. Customers enjoy a human approach to their financial affairs and a genuine commitment to transparency. Indeed, according to Charles Middleton, Triodos Bank is has been an open organisation since its inception. “We’re open and transparent in a very real way,” he says. “Customers receive regular information about the organisations that we lend to, including a unique project list, detailing every loan we make. So savers know exactly how their money is used.”

Triodos Bank numbers some of its former or existing customers as previous winners of the Queen’s Awards, including organic yoghurt producers, Yeo Valley organics, green energy providers, Ecotricity and Cook’s Delight, an organic and biodynamic food shop.

More recently Triodos Bank has sponsored a share issue on behalf of Cafédirect raising over £3.5 million, towards a target of £5 million, in just over two months. Most of this money has come from private investors.

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