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Where does my money go when I buy The Big Issue?

Our funding comes directly from vendor sales. This pays for the magazine to be produced and distributed across the UK

Vendor Kelvin Gregory

London Big Issue vendor Kelvin Gregory. Image: Exposure Photo Agency Ltd

Since the Big Issue was founded in 1991 we have been in constant partnership with our vendors. They buy magazines for £2 and sell the magazine for £4. They keep the profit from every sale, and can reinvest it in buying more magazines to earn the money they need to lift themselves out of poverty.

At Christmas, the price of the magazine typically rises to give vendors working hard out in the cold more money from each sale during the festive season. For the bumper Christmas editions of the magazine in 2023, the cover price will rise to £4.50. Vendors will buy each copy for £2.25 making an extra 25p each time.

Change a Big Issue vendor’s life this Christmas by purchasing a Winter Support Kit. You’ll receive four copies of the magazine and create a brighter future for our vendors through Christmas and beyond.

Big Issue vendors are either homeless or at risk of losing their home. The money that vendors earn through selling the magazine helps vendors to cover rent and bills. It also offers vendors who are unable to maintain other jobs, due to mental health or other issues, the opportunity to earn their own income. Chat to your local vendor to get to know their story. You can find out more about some of our vendors here and if you want to become a vendor and sell the magazine yourself, head here.

The Big Issue is a social enterprise, and our funding comes directly from vendor sales. This pays for the magazine to be produced and distributed across the UK so it is available for vendors wherever they need it. Sales offices with our distribution and outreach staff not only sell magazines to vendors but help them with issues they are facing and can refer them to other agencies for further support.

This is why it is so important that customers buy and take a copy of the magazine, so that the work of our distribution and outreach teams can continue and so the magazine is there for other people who come to the magazine looking to change their life through enterprise.

When it comes to the Big Issue, most people think of vendors selling the magazine. In 2022, the Big Issue worked with 10% more vendors than the previous year with vendors collectively earning £3.76 million in income.

Big Issue Group does so much other work to support people. Our mission is to create innovative solutions through enterprise to unlock opportunity for the 14 million people in the UK living in poverty.

Find out more about the work of the Big Issue Group here.

Support the Big Issue

For over 30 years, the Big Issue has been committed to ending poverty in the UK. In 2024, our work is needed more than ever. Find out how you can support the Big Issue today.
Vendor martin Hawes

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