There is increasing evidence of inter-organizational or cross-sector collaboration between social enterprises and for-profit companies to address sustainability challenges. Despite the emerging interest in such collaboration, the actual processes behind it often remain a ‘black box’. This case study contributes to filling that gap in the literature, by zooming in on the multi-faceted collaboration between IKEA —a global home furnishings retailer— and i-did, a small but ambitious Dutch social enterprise. This case shows that despite significant joint value creation, the collaboration so far has mainly impacted the social enterprise and has not had noticeable wider outcomes on IKEA or beyond the partnership. Nevertheless, continued collaboration can provide a basis for the generation of mutual value and to further explore and innovate around social and circular business models. We conclude by summarising lessons-learned for the benefit of for-profit companies and social enterprises exploring partnerships to address sustainability challenges.
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|Published in||New Business Models in a Decade of Action: Sustainable, Evidence-based, Impactful|
|Key words||Social enterprise, IKEA, cross-sector collaboration, work integration, circular economy|