Success is based on people who believe in themselves and each other. In a cooperative, an enterprise owned by its members, joint entrepreneurship and success create a sustainable basis for profitable business. An increasing number of people who become entrepreneurs choose a cooperative.
Cooperative entrepreneurship is a modern and flexible form of running a joint enterprise. Certain characteristics associated with cooperatives make them interesting and highly suited to today's requirements:
A cooperative is more
Why be an entrepreneur on your own? - Find partners! In a cooperative, joint entrepreneurship and success create a sustainable basis for running a profitable business. You can also start a cooperative on your own.
In a cooperative, everyone can have a say
Do you get to make decisions? A cooperative is a democratic community where all members have an equal vote.
A cooperative is there for its members
Who benefits from your business? The added value generated by a cooperative strengthens the economy and well-being of both members and their home region.
A cooperative brings businesses together
Is your company in need of a partner? The Cooperatives Act guarantees a permanent, flexible and confidential structure for cooperation between companies in the form of a cooperative.
A cooperative is a modern way to be an entrepreneur
Do you wish to contribute to building a more responsible future? A cooperative is an excellent form for running an enterprise on a social basis with the aim of solving societal and environmental problems through the means of a business.
All kinds of business can be run as a cooperative, regardless of the line of business. Small cooperatives, operating in a variety of lines of business, have emerged alongside the traditional large-scale cooperatives. Approximately two thousand small cooperatives are active in Finland.
Cooperatives based on personal ownership
These cooperatives are founded by individual persons, and members work in the cooperative as paid employees. A cooperative offers a great way of combining the best aspects of entrepreneurship and being a paid employee. So-called EBO cooperatives, where employees continue a business after a generational transfer, or when an entrepreneur gives up the business for other reasons, are also owned by members in person. At present, topical lines of business at the moment include the creative and welfare sectors.
Cooperatives producing services for company members
These cooperatives are founded by companies and produce various services for these company members. These cooperatives work in various sectors.
Cooperatives as learning environments
Cooperatives are becoming increasingly popular as providers of a concrete learning environment of entrepreneurship for educational institutions. Applications of the cooperative model to various open innovation environment models are constantly developed.
These cooperatives work in the field of staff hire services or form work pools in the form of a cooperative, established by companies. A cooperative work pool is also ideal for running a social enterprise.
Social economy and social entrepreneurship
In Europe, a considerable number of companies is not oriented to making distributable profit for investors. In fact, the financial needs of people and organisations are in many cases met most naturally through organisations based on membership and solidarity.
Social economy is an economic activity run mainly by cooperatives, mutual societies, non-profit associations and foundations, aiming at promoting the socially and economically sustainable well-being of members and the surrounding community, through democratic cooperation.
A significant factor in economy
Social economy is increasing in significance and new roles and tasks are formed for those active in social economy.
The concept of a social enterprise is also related to social economy. A social enterprise aims at contributing to the solving of a specific social or environmental problem by means of a business. The profits made by a social enterprise are usually allocated to promoting its social objective. A cooperative can work as a social enterprise.