Spotlight: Peter Ball

peter ball

What drives you?

Change. There is so much we can do which isn’t difficult, it doesn’t have to be super bold or super innovative. We can create change by looking at how we do things.

How do you define social entrepreneurship?

Trading to solve an issue.

Biggest SocEnt trend you have seen in the last 5 years?

In 2009, Melbourne co-hosted the Social Enterprise World Forum which helped raise public awareness of social entrepreneurship. Secondly, the Federal government launched SEDIF – the Social Enterprise Development Investment Fund – which brought new capital to the space (learn more here).


Peter has a background in banking , investment and finance. In 2007 he launched his first startup whose profits went to charity. In 2012, Peter was invited to speak on social finance and impact investing at SOCAP. “With all the people I met and connections I made at SOCAP, I extended my stay by four weeks to follow up and learn more about the space. I returned to Australia and started a social enterprise. This shoe shine business employed refugees, troubled youth and homeless people. As Australia’s first social franchise we soon had 16 franchisee shoe shine stands in the biggest office buildings in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. I handed this business to a foundation because I wanted to focus on how to help people with an idea. Senior executives, politicians, graduates – people from all walks of life – approached me asking “Can you help me with my social enterprise idea?” So I took a few months to design the program, found a space, opened the first round of  applications in August 2014, and have been running Impact Academy since then.



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