ESSAT CZ Named A Social Enterprise

The Czech Ministry of Regional Development has officially named HPF CleanCat's subsidiary ESSAT CZ a social enterprise, allowing the company to access subsidies from the EU's Integrated Regional Operational Programme (IROP) for 2014 – 2020.

With more than 50% of its employees coming from the ranks of the handicapped, ESSAT CZ has established itself as reliable provider of substitute compliance for companies with more than 25 employees that cannot fulfill their legal obligation to employ handicapped individuals but do not want to pay the mandatory fee.  

In order to be named a social enterprise and access EU funds, companies also need to fulfill a series of other criteria beyond providing substitute compliance. Besides the minimal number of physically or socially disadvantaged employees (not only physical handicaps, but also the long-term unemployed or those caring for loved ones), companies also need to re-invest most of their profits into further developing the company or focusing on the local community. 

Social integration and the related support for social enterprise is one of the European Union's key priorities in the current program period. Under this regime, social enterprises can tap IROP to cover costs for technical equipment that will help their ability to compete on the market. This is the case of ESSAT CZ, which plans to purchase a dry ice blaster, equipment that up to now it had only rented. 

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