PEOPLE MEETING COMMON ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND CULTURAL NEEDS TOGETHER

Retail and Marketing

Customer owned shops

Provide lower prices to customer members

Consumer co-operative shops are driven to provide the best possible products at the lowest price to customers, rather than to maximise profits to investor shareholders.

Provide competition and choice in the wider market

The different business focus from competitors means that co-operatives are often pioneering in providing different choices to customers, such as local sourcing, fair trade products or environmentally friendly packaging.  These can have a profound effect on the general market by changing consumer behaviours.

Support a range of community activities

As community owned businesses, co-operatives will focus on helping the people that the businesses belong to by providing additional services to local people.

Share wealth with its customers through sharing profits through dividend

The original Rochdale co-operative model led the way with profit sharing by returning money to customers in proportion to their purchases, and this is continued today through cash dividend payments that share the success of the business with customers who have made it happen.

Examples

bHive

Bhive Co-operative

bHive is based in Bendigo, Victoria. Local Bendigo residents will build, operate and own the platform that will build over time to provide skill sharing, car sharing, lifts, food sharing, logistics, house sharing, crowdfunding, insurance and lots more.

Year established: 2016

Type: Customer Owned, Platform Co-operative

Industry: Purchasing and Supply Services, Retail and Marketing

The Co-op

Community Co-operative Store (The Barossa)

The Barossa Community Co-operative Store, ‘The Co-op’, is one of the largest and longest-standing retail customer co-operative in Australia. It is not only a successful business, supplying retail products and services to its members and community, but also creates financial, human and social and relationship capital for its members, suppliers and the business.

Year established: 1944

Type: Customer Owned

Industry: Retail and Marketing

Emerald and District Co-operative Society

Emerald and District Co-operative Society

Emerald and District Co-operative is a seventy four year old co-operative that has transformed from a small country store to a major hardware, trade, rural and stockfeed retailer. The co-op also operates Barry Plant Emerald Real Estate and a Bendigo Bank agency. Starting with seven members, the co-operative now has 3,000 shareholders.

Year established: 1945

Type: Customer Owned

Industry: Retail and Marketing

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