Regeneration Projects is now a Certified B Corporation

Providing online education, alliance building and strategy services, Regeneration Projects empowers purpose-driven leaders to take their work beyond sustainability. To celebrate becoming a B Corp, the Regeneration Projects team shared some of the how and why behind their certification.

Tell us a bit about what Regeneration Projects does.

What began as an idea during the midst of a COVID-19 lockdown, Regen Projects is now a leading consultancy within Naarm Melbourne’s impact community. We are here to support leaders through a combination of First Nations wisdom, Ecological literacy and regenerative business tools to assist their work on the circular economy transition.

Regeneration Projects team

Why did you want to certify as a B Corp?

Transparency and accountability are essential in this time of change, and B Corp is a clear signal to our stakeholders that we mean business, but a different kind of business.

The certification process gave us an opportunity to build upon our regenerative practices and embed systems into our strategic foundations as a startup. We’re in a better position to be able to provide experience-based recommendations to our clients and collaborators about starting their own B Corp journeys.

What makes Regeneration Projects unique as a business? Tell us some of the areas where you have the biggest impact, or some of the little changes you’ve made to make a difference.

What makes us unique is our experience in facilitating reciprocal partnerships between western Businesses, ecosystems, and First Nations.

We provide immersive learning experiences guided by First Nations Elders and culture carriers to support leaders in starting their own regenerative projects and businesses. The knowledge and understanding that comes from these experiences is paramount in adopting a regenerative approach in business and day-to-day life.

Regen team member community service

B Corps want to help transform our economy to one that is inclusive, sustainable, and regenerative. What business practice do you want to see become the norm?

We would love to see businesses investing in the ecosystems which are connected to their supply chain. Regen Projects is based on the eastern coast of Nairm Port Phillip Bay, so giving back to this place looks like spending an hour at the local beaches on Friday picking up litter. It provides a wellbeing service to our staff, it features in our branding and marketing, so it’s our responsibility to give back. We’re also working with others towards a swimmable Birrarung Yarra River by 2030. Every business has ecosystems that it depends upon, sometimes it’s just harder to see in the beginning.

Was there a B Corp that inspired you to certify, or one that you look to for inspiration?

For CEO of Regen Projects, Matt Sykes, one of the pivotal breakthroughs was reading Founder of Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard ‘Let My People Go Surfing’. Seeing an example of business-led care for our planet, and prioritising purpose instead of instant profit was deeply inspiring. Then in 2019 after quitting his full-time job, Matt met with Patagonia’s former Head of Environmental Initiatives, Rick Ridegway, who challenged Matt to create what is now known as Regen Projects — a consultancy that could support leaders and businesses in impact transition. Patagonia has always held a place in business DNA and will continue to inspire our work, as will Melbourne-based B Corps like KeepCup and Intrepid Travel.

Regen team speaking at an event

Do you have any tips for aspiring B Corps about the certification process?

The process of becoming certified took around 12 months, which included an intensive 3 month phase that dedicated Monday afternoons. As a start-up it is difficult to put aside time, yet staying persistent is definitely key. Once a business does its B Impact assessment, you become aware of the gaps that you need to fill in order to be more sustainable, regenerative and resilient.

Take the time to consider these gaps, and turn them into opportunities as well as focus on your natural strengths. Having an accountability buddy who regularly checks in was super helpful for us.

Finally, all of the systems and policies that were sparked through the certification process are now in our Benefit Handbook, a strategic tool for all our staff that will continue to grow and evolve.