Why set up a co-operative?

Every co-operative in the world started from the same place: a group of like minded people who identified a business need or opportunity and came together to try and fulfil it.

There are over 5,933 independent co-operatives in the UK. From football to fashion, health care to housing, community owned shops to credit unions, and wind farms to web design.

Co-operatives exist to serve their members, whether they are the customers, the employees or the local community. Because they do not need to bring benefits to outside shareholders, co-operatives can focus on making sure that members get the best service.

What’s more, these members are the owners, with an equal say in what the co-operative does. So, as well as getting the products and services they need, members shape the decisions their co-operative makes.