SME co-ops

Re-vitalize the Swedish cooperative sector
Gordon HAHN, chairman, Coompanion & director of SERUS
Reykjavik 20140321
Mission of Coompanion
Coompanion support co-operatives
• to increase in numbers by start-up
• to be widely known and recognized
• to grow and to act as a role model in
every industry and sector
• to operate on equal conditions with other
forms of enterprising
Our task is to …
• inform, provide counselling, coach, train and run
projects that promote cooperative start-ups and
cooperative development in Sweden.
• create favorable circumstances and conditions for
cooperatives and for entrepreneurship in the social
economy and local development spheres.
• During the past 5 years started enterprises with
help from Coompanion have increased by 68 %
• In 2013 was 64 % of the companies founded as
• This has given some 5 000 new entrepreneurs in
Who we are
• 25 regional
Coompanions (officies)
in each county
• Approximately 120
• owned and controlled
locally by over 900
The law on
• enhances democracy in
cooperatives enterprising
• legitimizes tailor-made
business counselling
• makes cooperatives visible
The Swedish Co-operative model
Agricultural (production) co-ops - 1850
Consumer co-ops – 5/9 1899 – 3M members
Housing co-ops – HSB 1924 – 550t members
Petrol co-ops – 1945 – 1,6M members
Funeral co-ops - 1945
• Glory betwen1900 – 1955
• Between 1960 – 1980 centralised business
structure and de-democrized business
structure = Coompanion
The revitalize co-op movement
• Work integrated social cooperatives
(Working coops)
• Broadband cooperatives for rural
establishment (consumer coops)
• Energy cooperatives (production coops)
• SME Co-ops
• Health, education and welfare cooperatives
• Attitude changement amongst youngsters to
start cooperatives
• Cooperative juridical form (economic
societies) is the only growing form of
start-up 2012 and 2013.
Work integration social
increased in
Sweden since 2008
• has
- in the Stockholm area with 47 per cent
- in Malmö with surroundings with 70 per cent
- in Gothenburg with surroundings with 53 per cent
• 2013 had the three metropolitan regions (Stockholm,
Västra Götaland, Skåne,) together around 1 500
employees in work integration social cooperatives
• East Sweden Region -> Kooptjänst & Happy Huddik
• Today totally approximately 350 work integrated
social cooperatives employing approximately 10 000
Broadband co-ops
• In order to secure full-speed broadband to all areas
of Sweden, Co-op solutions has been the driving
• Today, co-ops cover approximately 20 % of the
infrastructure of broadband in Sweden
• But more important; it has been the
solution for thousands of households
and individuals to access to Internet
with full-speed.
Energy co-ops
• Increased number of Cooperatives in energy
production, especially within wind-, solar
and biogas energy.
Egen Kraft i Sverige
Biogas Dalsland
Solel i Sala och Heby
SME co-ops
• In cultural and creative sector, we see an increase of
co-ops for cooperation between SME. The same trend is
for tourism and educational sector.
• New cooperatives exist primarily in the information and
as well as in arts, entertainment and recreation. Many
operative enterprises are engaged in health care, school
Skäggiga damen
Right now we see a strong trend within the
young generation in Sweden; they want to
start businesses together. But unfortunately
– they don’t know that it is the co-operative
business form that matches their values.
Many in the new generation wants to change
the world and has already thought about
sustainable development, solidarity and equal
We call them …
Our new campaign Generation Cooperation
becomes a statement, strongly linked to
the co-operative principles.
In a survey made 2013 to respondents age 20-35 the question
was: What words do you associate strongly with cooperative
entrepreneurship? -> "cooperation" and "community“. Would
like to see more cooperatives in health and social care.
Enterprise barometer 2012:
•Half of the population in Sweden would like to
•62 % of them would like to start together with
•70 % of youngsters (18-30) would like to start
with others
•Only 35 % of existing enterprises is conducted
people in Sweden
by 2 or more
Co-operatives in 289
Business and management
Pre-school, child care
Art and performance
Renting and operating of premises
Wired telecommunications
Computing services
Sound recording and music
Collection, treatment and supply of
Comprehensive school and pre-school
Social work activities for disabled
Retail food stores
Wind power stations
And so on……….
The Swedish Co-operative
1900 – 1960
Housing co-ops, Consumer co-ops, Agricultural co-ops,
Petrol co-ops, Funeral co-ops e.g. (Established
cooperative movement)
2000 – 2013
Worker co-ops, insertion co-ops, rural co-ops,
health and welfare co-ops, School co-ops, cultural coops, SME co-ops
Gordon Hahn
Chairman Coompanion Sweden
[email protected]