Community Bees – Example trading Income Stream for Community Centres

Apr. 92019

Community Bees Income Stream

You can use our Community Bees business model canvas to create a trading income stream for your community centre. This blog is all about helping community venues make money through trading. We will share a community business model with you, and then show how it can be improved.

Many community centres have a ‘point of sale’ box on their reception desk selling charity sweets, furry mascots, or mini bobble hats. This business model lets you make your own product which saves the bees and makes money for your community centre at the same time.

Community Bees Business Model Canvas

A free valuable resource for community centres to develop trading income steams from @CEE_socentThe product is a small pipette bottle of sugar solution. When people come across a tired bee sat on the ground, they can give it a bit of energy by squeezing out a drop of sugary drink next to the bee. This helps the bee recover and fly off to safety quicker. Bees work very hard and they deserve the break.

Community Bees – Pipette Bee Bottle - CEE_socent

The bottles are easy to order off You can brand these yourselves by printing your own sticky labels. The sugar solution is easy to make. It also creates a good conversation at the reception desk.

So how good is this business model?

Let’s apply the 7 point assessment tool from Strategyzer


1 Switching costs

Low score – customers are not locked in.

2 Recurring revenues

Low score – one time transaction

3 Earning versus spending

Low score – you have to buy all the bottles and create the point of sale material before making a sale.

4 Game changing cost structure

Medium score – the costs are quite low and there is plenty of margin.

5 Others do the work

Low score – you do all the ordering, bottling, labelling and selling.

6 Scalability

Low score – you are only selling to people who come through your reception of which many won’t want to save the bees.

7 Protection from competition

Low score – anyone can sell sugar solution and take over the market.


So overall it’s not a good business model if you just trade at your community centre reception. But let’s see if we can pump this business model up a bit 🙂

Improving your community business model

So … your best chance of improving this business model is through partnerships. What if you develop a partnership with a business that has multiple counters across the country like a chain of cinemas. If you choose a partner that has a high flow of customers through their building/sales counters, then your offer of saving bees whilst raising funds for community centres could work well. This type of partnership will increase your scores for point 5 as others will be doing the selling for you. It would be good to have a national charity partner to connect with a national or international corporate, but not necessary. However even with these partnerships you are still hitting a ceiling in terms of scaling up.

So lets turn this into a subscription. How can you turn this into a national campaign for £3/month recurring revenue?? Well, how about membership of the Community Bees Club could give you:

  • 1 bottle of sugar solution a month
  • News on how bees are doing through doing regular reviews of the research
  • Tips of looking after bees
  • Joint ownership of a community bee hive using a co-operative model – with a return on investment being paid back in honey

So now you have recurring revenues you also have dependable income coming through and will score better at point 3 earning before spending.

What if you just supply the bottles and sugar recipe kit to your customers. Now you don’t have to make the solution yourself and are scoring better at point 5 – making others do the work for you. You could also incentivise members to post videos of rescuing bees – a free jar of honey for every bee video posted – now you have got your membership creating content for you.

With the subscription model there are virtually no limits to growth on point 6 scalability.

And if you get there first with a partnership with a leading environmental trust then you are protecting yourself from competition – increasing your score for point 7.

About us: Community Enterprise Engine

We hope you find this blog useful.

We are happy for you to use, share and develop this business model. We’ll even chat to you about how you take it forward.

Find out more about our team and get in touch.

Business for Good @CEE_socent