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Major Boundaries Or Challenges In Social Entrepreneurship

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Discuss about the Case Study of Dr Sam Prince.



Dr Sam Prince is an industrialist with a degree in medicine. He is of Scottish –born origin with Sri Lankan heritage and runs a chain of Mexican restaurants in different regions of Asia-Pacific, particularly in locations like Sri Lanka, Cambodia and Vietnam. Sam started his Mexican food restaurant named Zambrero at the age of 21. Since then he has been able to earn a good reputation as an efficient entrepreneur with a showcase of excellent skills from an early period (Warnecke 2015). The present paper discusses the extent to which Zambrero founder Sam Prine exemplifies certain entrepreneurial characteristics and traits. The paper then outlines three major challenges involved in establishing and sustaining a social enterprise. A logical conclusion is provided at the end of the paper.

Analysis of Entrepreneur Traits/Characteristics

Dr Sam Prince has been known to be a generous doctor, and this character is often reflected in his work as an industrialist. Sam crave for building up an association dedicated to societal  conscientiousness. The aim that he had was to build up a humanitarian organisation that works for the society as well as reflects the modern Mexican culture. 


The first trait that Dr Sam Prince exhibits is of a social entrepreneur. In the given case study Sam displays the traits of a social entrepreneur wherein the sole concern is not about generating profits from the restaurant Zambrero but is also about giving something back to those who are needy in the society. His company takes initiatives to serve the societal concerns and addresses the major issues faced by the society. Some examples of the initiatives he has taken are One Disease at a Time and Plate for Plate that strives to help the society. Prince is known to eventually help and improve lives of many individuals with the implementation of a wide range of innovative and advanced business, aid and medical projects (Enos 2015). According to Zahra et al. (2014), social entrepreneurs have a vital role in leading changes in organisations as they have the deep understanding of the importance of giving back to the society they come from. They belief that if a real impact is to be made in the society, then there is a need of significant changes coming from within the organisation placed in the society. Prince as such a social entrepreneur has the belief that for making aid organisations thriving they are to be run with the equivalent rigidity and strictness as required for running a business. It is true that one cannot understand the pain and plights of the under privileged unless they are a part of such scenario. Prince was able to witness and feel such situations of helplessness and distress when he was working as a doctor in hospitals.


The second trait that Sam exhibits is passion or obsession. Dr Sam is a philanthropist and entrepreneur at the same time. He can be refer to as a social entrepreneur, with the main focus on social work (Goffee and Scase 2015) As per the case study a deep passion is reflected in the work Sam does and his obsession to work for the needy had led to the startup restaurant Zambrero. He had been working for people suffering from eradication of scabies. Assisting that populace who show anguish and want to eliminate major public health concerns like scabies requires patience, empathy and determination. This determination was what Sam had as he was determined to fulfil his goals and objectives at any cost. In the vein of the entrepreneur skills is a passion that can take a new entrepreneur to the epitome of success (Hulgård and Andersen 2016).

The third impactful trait that Sam has is the ability to pre-plan all tasks before executing them. At the present time, the focus of Sam has gone beyond Asia and is highlighting native communities. Prince had planned about setting up the organisation while he was working as a doctor. As an entrepreneur, it is pivotal to have a farsightedness and plan every step in advance in order to walk towards the distinct goal (Carraher, Welsh and Svilokos 2015).

Major Boundaries or Challenges in Social Entrepreneurship

While setting up enterprises that aim to have a great social impact, social entrepreneurs face a wide array of challenges that are to be overcome for achieving success. The explosion in the global connectivity had aided in the boom of social entrepreneurship, however, the intense competition for receiving philanthropic funds have been a concern in the present era. Social entrepreneurship is faced with large-scale social issues that are to be solved in some creative ways using innovative ideas. The unique challenges faced in the way of delivering the social impact, social returns and social value are linked with commercial values (Choi and Majumdar 2014). 


The most important challenge that social entrepreneurs face is funding. Social enterprises might be run as a non-profit or for-profit and fits in a position between the solely charitable organisation and traditional corporation. It might be difficult to generate adequate income by selling socially beneficial products or services approaching the concerned investors are often a hurdle and not a smooth process. Many donors may come out to be distrustful of social enterprises being established as a for-profit company where the focus is more on wealth generation and not on social values.

The second challenge faced by the social entrepreneur is communication of value objectivity. Social enterprises deliver to an extent more than commercial value and social values ignite the desire of the social entrepreneur. This fact along with the actuality that social values are not measured in easy terms make it challenging for entrepreneurs to communicate the actual scenario to investors. It is crucial to have a uphold objectivity for convincing others and taking the appropriate decisions to move the enterprise towards the set goals (Peris-Ortiz et al. 2017).

The third imperative challenge that can be discussed in the present context is setting up of a strong combination of strategy and long-term goals. Any business would need to have long-term strategies in order to make a place in the list of top companies in the same sector. It is indispensable to define the accurate goals and eventually drive growth in a manner that is sustainable. Difficulties stem from the very fact that the purpose held by the organisation is to have social benefits. Manifold social benefits may lead to a wide array of goals. Every goal is to be evaluated strongly in terms of provision of cost just to ensure that true value is created. A robust and realistic strategy would add value to the unique proposition and provide a competitive advantage over other organisations (Sivathanu and Bhise 2013).



The main objective of the present paper was to analyse the different entrepreneurship traits and characteristics of Dr Sam Prince, founder of Zambrero, and highlight three important challenges faced by social entrepreneurs. From the paper, it can be concluded that Sam Prince has exhibited the desired traits of a philanthropist in his work as an entrepreneur. With his passion, dedication and planning power, he is all set to being a difference to the society. Social entrepreneurs are known to put social values before commercial values. In doing so social entrepreneurs are faced with a number of challenges like short of funding, difficulty in the communication of value objectivity and absence of strategy and long-term goals.  For a rising entrepreneur, it would be suitable to analyse such aspects in order to achieve the desired objectives in the field of social entrepreneurship.



Carraher, S.M., Welsh, D.H. and Svilokos, A., 2016. Validation of a measure of social entrepreneurship. European Journal of International Management, 10(4), pp.386-402.

Choi, N. and Majumdar, S., 2014. Social entrepreneurship as an essentially contested concept: Opening a new avenue for systematic future research. Journal of Business Venturing, 29(3), pp.363-376.

Enos, S.L., 2015. Service-learning and Social Entrepreneurship in Higher Education: A Pedagogy of Social Change. Palgrave Macmillan.

Goffee, R. and Scase, R., 2015. Entrepreneurship in Europe (Routledge Revivals): The Social Processes. Routledge.

Hulgård, L. and Andersen, L.L., 2016. Social entrepreneurship. In Social Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprises. Routledge.

Peris-Ortiz, M., Teulon, F. and Bonet-Fernandez, D., 2017. Social Entrepreneurship in Non-profit and Profit Activities. Theoretical and Empirical Landscape: An Overview. In Social Entrepreneurship in Non-Profit and Profit Sectors (pp. 1-7). Springer International Publishing.

Sivathanu, B. and Bhise, P.V., 2013. Challenges for social entrepreneurship. Intl. J. Appl. Innovation Eng. Manage. ISSN, pp.2319-4847.

Warnecke, T., 2015. Sowing the seeds for global'changemaking': teaching international development for a social entrepreneurship major. International Journal of Pluralism and Economics Education, 6(1), pp.12-31.

Zahra, S.A., Newey, L.R. and Li, Y., 2014. On the frontiers: The implications of social entrepreneurship for international entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, 38(1), pp.137-158.


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