Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everybody!

With the sprouts and sofas behind us, we hope you had a great break and are back refreshed and revitalised as we roll full steam ahead into 2019. What a lot there is to look forward to!

At Co-op and Community Finance, it’s our privilege to work with so many organisations who are committed to their communities, and we’re resolving to keep on doing what we know works to support them, and to keep our eyes open for new trends and opportunities.

We’re predicting that big areas for us this year will be around the continuing growth in Community Pubs, and increasingly, tech and platform co-ops.

The new £2.2m from Power to Change for Community Pubs in England will support and extend the great work that’s been happening with the More Than A Pub, bringing pubs into community ownership and keeping them open as the hearts of their communities.

As every business is now a tech business one way or another, and as young people increasingly want more purpose, value and autonomy in work, we’re expecting to see the continued rise of the tech co-op, and possibly even the fintech co-op. As CoTech gathers together tech co-operatives under one umbrella, the size of this part of the sector becomes clear – £10m revenue across 35 co-ops, just one year into its existence.

There are events to look forward to, as well. We’re proud to be sponsoring Co-operative Futures ‘Can Co-operative Deserts Bloom?’ at the start of February, and Stir To Action will be continuing their workshops to help build a new economy until July, if not further.

The International Day of Co-operatives is on July 6th and Co-ops Fortnight, spanning June and July, will demonstrate a ‘Co-operation Nation’. Start thinking now about how your co-op can get involved!

Whatever we do this year, we know it will be all about common ownership. We’re looking forward to being part of the communities we support, building strength and resilience within them, and helping new ones find their way. There can’t be a better way to start January than that!

We hope it’s a good one for you too. Roll on 2019!