About Us

SEEM was based in Nottingham and provided services across the East Midlands and beyond.  Formed in 2002 their aim was ‘…to support the creation and development of social businesses and social enterprises in order that they become sustainable and deliver significant and enduring social impact‘.

Morphing eventually into a social investment vehicle based in the North of England. Our aim is to be an actor with first principles. To grapple with the originating concept  at an individual community member level. A different philosophical approach to business, which we espouse in a little more detail below.

We are Social Enterprise East Midlands – a Vers. 2.0 if you will. Our mission is to foster social enterprise and community business across our six county region.

There is a space in the maturing Social Business market for bankers and lawyers, without doubt. We believe community enterprise, however, is about sitting down with a cup of tea, a bun preferably, and discussing ideas and options, how a community business might be structured and delivered? All in a safe, non-judgemental and value free setting.

The artist Degas, in conversation with the French poet Stéphane Mallarmé in the 19th Century, was of the opinion that he had plenty of ideas…too many in fact. To which Mallarmé famously replied that he couldn’t make a poem with ideas, only with words. A bit like starting your community enterprise. Any number of ideas are possible, but only after the power of conversation can they ever become reality.

We are particularly keen to engage with community groups, faith groups, childcare and education settings of all kinds and enterprising individuals who have an idea. The very earliest form of enterprise creation. The good thought!

It’s a bit low tech perhaps, but some of our best, most durable projects have started that way. Eventually, we know, everyone has to tackle governance, accounting and accountability, fund-raising or policies and practice.

Our experience over many years of community and charity development shows that the first few informal and supportive conversations can start a progressively active bunch of people on the right road – to growth and sustainability.

We do not make any charge for our advice or reflection on our experiences.

Our services, and indeed these very web pages, are sponsored by, and the help we give, are provided by our Partners at SmithMartin LLP – a Cambridge based Social Business, putting social outcome ahead of gross profit.

Contact us for a conversation.


Matters of Geography:

Defining our scope and area of operation – looking for a new home.

The East Midlands is one of nine official regions of England. The eastern part of the Midlands, it consists of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire (except North and North east Lincolnshire), Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire and Rutland.

The region has an area of 15,627 km2 (6,034 sq mi), and was home to over 4.5 million people in 2011.

There are four principal urban centres, Derby, Leicester, Northampton and Nottingham; and a number of next tier centres including Boston, Chesterfield, Corby, Grantham, Hinckley, Kettering, Lincoln, Loughborough, Mansfield, and Wellingborough.

The region’s relative proximity to London and its connectivity on the national motorway and trunk road networks help the East Midlands thrive as asocial enterprise economic hub. The region’s principal airport is East Midlands Airport located ≤20km (≤12.5 miles) from Ashby, Derby, Ilkeston, Loughborough and Nottingham.

We are currently scoping Leicestershire and Derbyshire for new offices and meeting spaces.

We are always happy to meet with visitors in Cambridge. You can find our location here. Alternatively, we travel and are happy to meet with you across our region too.

Our team have a range of skills and expertise in project management, governance and charity development, as well as research and evaluation. We would be happy to talk to new partners about how SocEntEastMids can contribute.

Our lead partner for enterprise development is Tim Smith. You can find him on LinkedIn here.

Contact Tim for a conversation at anytime.


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