There are many reasons to start a worker cooperative, or convert an existing business to a worker co-op. Worker-owners tend to be paid more than traditional employees in their same field, stay in their jobs longer, and have better working conditions. There are other benefits that are less tangible, as well, such as the empowerment that comes from participating in a democratic workplace.
MCDC is here to help you make that happen with a variety of resources:
- Grants up to $10,000 to cover technical assistance, business development, and outreach for both new and existing co-ops — apply here
- Education on the worker cooperative model
- See the video called “Co-ops 101” right on our homepage.
- An overview of the co-op model and the process of starting co-ops from the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives: Cooperatives in Wisconsin: The Power of Cooperative Action
- Information for co-op start-ups
- Information for worker co-ops
- Support from Madison’s community of worker co-ops, MadWorC
- Business planning, legal support, and other technical assistance from MCDC, the UW Center for Cooperatives, and our network of preferred providers
- Connections to local organizations for training, benefits, and resources
- Start-up capital and financing through our lending partners, Madison Development Corporation, Shared Capital Cooperative, and Kiva Madison.
If this sounds good to you, please tell us about yourself and your idea on our intake form.