Real Estate, Small Business & Startups, and Sustainability

Real estate firm earns B Corp status

March 17, 2016
| By Pat Evans |
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616 Lofts on Michigan
The four-story 616 Lofts on Michigan in Grand Rapids features 54 apartments and ground-floor retail. Photo via

Another Grand Rapids company is a certified B Corporation.

616 Lofts announced its certification yesterday as it continues to seek a sustainable urban community.

“We place a high value on authenticity and transparency,” 616 Director of Sustainability Drew Coppess said. “We respect those in our midst who have edges and aren’t ashamed to put them on display. It is our mission to deliver truth and candor in the business place, and a B Corp certification supports and enhances that mission.”

B Corp companies are evaluated by B Lab, a nonprofit that certifies the companies that are legally required to consider the decisions they make that impact the company’s employees, suppliers, community, consumers and environment.

616 Lofts scored a 97 overall B Score, which has a median score of 55 for all businesses that have completed the assessment. To be certified, a company has to score 80 out of 200 on the evaluation.

“Our B Corp certification provides a framework for honesty and illuminates the path to being better humans, building a better business, to build a better community,” Coppess said.

There are more than 1,600 B Corps in the world.

Grand Rapids B Corps

The 616 certification comes weeks after the certification of Grand Rapids-based restaurant group Essence Restaurant Group.

“We are extremely pleased with 616 Lofts’ commitment to sustainability and their efforts to develop and foster an urban setting where residents can get virtually all of their needs met,” said Lauren Jaenicke, marketing and sustainability director, Essence Restaurant Group. “By becoming a certified B Corp, 616 offers a unique and valuable perspective on architectural design and community.”

Other certified companies in Grand Rapids include Brewery Vivant, Bazzani Building Co., Catalyst Partners, Cascade Engineering and The GFB.

“I am a big believer in the B Corp movement and the positive collective impact it is having in Grand Rapids and in communities around the country,” Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss said. “Businesses can, indeed, be used as a force for good.”

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