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"Co-operative business is not business as usual

pgstamp"Co-operative business is not business as usual", declared Dame Pauline Green, President of the International Co-operativce Alliance, in launching the Australia Post IYC 2012 commemorative products on the 15 February 2012  at the Melbourne Town Hall.

The launch was organised by the IYC Secretariat.

There were about 85 co-operators present including representatives from bankmecu, Barossa Community Store, , Capricorn Society, CBH Group Co-operative Development Services Ltd,  Hepburn Wind, Fitzroy and Carlton Community Credit Union, Co-operatives Victoria, SouthEast Housing Co-operative, Norco and West Belconnen Health Co-operative.

"Co-operatives are people-based businesses," Dame Pauline said.

She said that co-operatives do make profits but  "it is what we do with them and who decides that is different.  She said that co-operatives had a triple bottom line - investing in the business, providing a return to members and investing in the communities co-operatives are located in and trade with.

Dame Pauline said that throughout the world there were 327 million shareholders of companies but nearly one billion member-owners of co-operatives. She said that it had been estimated that there were 1.4 million co-operatives throughout the world employing 100 million people. It is not  "a niche model," she said, "we are a successfull business model and we have scale."

Dame Pauline said that co-operative financial institutions had come through the Global Financial Crisis and had not required Government bailouts." She said that in the UK the Co-operative Bank  had  experienced an increaase of 79% in people switching to the bank.

She said that unlike other financial institutions, "Co-operative financial institutions have sustained their loans to businesses and individuals."

She said that the reason was the ownership structure of co-operatives and that "co-operatives service human need - not human greed."

Dame Pauline said "Our challenge as co-operatives is that not enough people know the size, scope and reach of co-operatives. "The challenge"  she said was " to do something about it."

She said that IYC 2012 is an opportunity for co-operatives as "one dominant model of business is no longer acceptable. She said that the co-operative movement "must work together regionally, nationally and globally.

She said that Australia had a "great start' for IYC 2012 with the commemorative stamp products and the collectable coin.

stamp-designDame Pauline said that the end of IYC 2012 should be the beginning of a decade of co-operative growth.

The  Australia Post stamp commemorative products are a tribute to the work of the IYC 2012 Secretariat and the willingness of Australia Post to respond to the request.. The co-operatives featured on the stamps  are the CBH Group, the Community Mutual Group, CEHL, Capricorn, Barossa Community Store, the Fitzroy and Carlton Community Credit Co-operative, Norco, West Belconnen Health Co-operative and Hepburn Wind.

Global News Hub

global news hub icaThe Global News Hub has been created by the Co-operative Press Ltd with the help of the Inter Press Service News Agency (IPS News). The web site hosts text, pictures and video content. You can also subscribe to a mailing list.. [ more detail ]

Co-operative College

collegelogoThe UK Co-operative College is dedicated to the promotion of co-operative values, ideas and principles. It was established in 1919. In the UK the Co-operative College is developing new models to run schools as co-operatives.  [ more detail ]

IYC Australia 2012

iyc-logo australia_hyphenVisit the Australian  International Year of Co-operatives 2012 web site - established by the Australian IYC 2012 National Steering Committee. Visit the site for Australian activities and resources for the International Year of Co-operatives in Australia.  [ more detail ]