Top five of the co-ops

We have been named number five in a list of the Top 100 co-operatives in the UK.

It was recently announced we jumped one place from sixth to fifth in the annual list of co-operative businesses based on turnover published as part of the Co-op Economy Report.

The result means that we are the highest placed independent retail co-operative, with Co-op Group, John Lewis, Arla Foods and the National Merchant Buying Society filling out the top five slots.

Debbie Robinson, Central England Co-op Chief Executive, said: “This report showcases the importance of co-operative businesses and how our co-operative difference is what sets us apart.

“Our member-owned, community focused, co-operative business achieved this result thanks to the support of our colleagues, customers and Members pushing us to become a diverse, progressive, relevant and inclusive Society.

“We will continue to highlight our point of difference – our co-operative values and principles – as we position ourselves at the heart of communities we serve and aim to thrive as a successful independent Society.”

The Co-op Economy report is the nation’s only comprehensive report on the UK’s co-operative sector. It reveals turnover, membership and employee figures for thousands of co-op enterprises across the UK.

It has been compiled by Co-operatives UK on behalf of the UK co-operative movement. The report analyses data from thousands of co-op businesses across the UK for the period 2005 to 2020.

It also revealed that the UK's 7,063 co-ops have a combined turnover of £38.2 billion (up £350 million from 2019) and 14 million people are members of a co-op - the equivalent to more than a fifth of the UK's population.

Nick Matthews, Chair of Co-operatives UK, said: “There's an appetite for a different economy to emerge from this crisis, with many people talking about the need to ‘build back better’. If we are to rebuild a fairer economy, provide decent livelihoods and support communities we need more co-ops, mutuals and social enterprises.”

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