Canadian co-operatives and mutuals have committed $25 Million to establish the Canadian Co-operative Investment Fund (CCIF). The CCIF will provide financing for new and expanding Canadian co-operatives in Canada. The $25 million in committed investment to date is the threshold agreed by partners as the start-up capital required for a self-sustaining fund.
“The Canadian Co-operative Investment Fund demonstrates the willingness of our sector to invest in the future of Canadian Co-operatives,” says Andy Morrison, Chair of the Board of Directors of CCIF and former Chief Executive Officer of Arctic Co-operatives Limited and the Arctic Co‑operative Development Fund. “There is a critical need for investment vehicles that understand the needs specific to co‑operatives. CCIF has been designed by co-operatives to invest in co‑operatives.”
The following organizations from across Canada have agreed in principle to invest in the CCIF, including 6 CCEDNet Members:
Co-operatives have a long tradition of working together, and the CCIF is a great example of the sector collaborating to develop a solution to a long-standing challenge,” said Rob Wesseling, President and CEO of The Co-operators, a lead investor in the fund. “We are pleased to support the creation of this new source of financing, which will contribute to the strength and sustainability of Canadian co-ops.”
“Co-operatives make a significant contribution to the Canadian economy and society”, added Guy Cormier, President and CEO of Desjardins Group. “Desjardins’ investment in the CCIF demonstrates our belief that co-operatives continue to have a significant role to play in Canada’s economic future and that we must enable the movement with the appropriate financial tools to succeed.”
The CCIF will be managed by Community Forward Assistance, an experienced fund manager with roots in community lending including co-operatives.
About the Canadian Co-operative Investment Fund: The CCIF is a response to a critical challenge facing co‑operatives and mutuals to access capital without compromising their autonomy and their one member one vote structure. Launching with an initial $25 Million, the fund is open to investment by accredited investors across Canada. CCIF anticipates funding its first investment in early 2018. For more information on investing in the CCIF or for details on how co-operatives can qualify for financing from the fund, contact Community Forward Assistance Funds.