New Studies Demonstrate the Value of New Brunswick Co-operatives and Social Enterprises

December 4, 2014

New Brunswick co-operatives generate $1.4 billion in revenues, employ thousands 

A new study on co-operatives and social enterprises prepared for the Co-operative Enterprise Council of New Brunswick (CECNB), with support from the Department of Post-Secondary Education and Labour, revealed that co-operatives make a significant economic impact in the province.  The findings of this study, conducted by the Shannon School of Business at Cape Breton University, were released at a recent news conference.

The study reported that New Brunswick co-operatives:

  • Generated $1.35 billion in annual revenues
  • Created the equivalent of 7,500 full time jobs
  • Contributed over $500 million to the province’s GDP
  • Paid nearly $330 million in employment income and more than $150 million in taxes

“Co-operatives and social enterprises boost employment, keep investment in rural communities, and address a myriad of social, environmental, and cultural issues,” said Wendy Keats, CECNB’s Executive Director. “Not only do they make economic sense, they help create healthy, vibrant communities.”

In addition to the economic impact study, a 2014 survey of 138 social enterprises was carried out by CECNB in partnership with researchers at Mount Royal and Simon Fraser Universities.  This survey revealed that 30% of social enterprises provide employment development services and 20% provide training for workforce integration, helping to increase the employability of the people they serve (e.g. people living with disabilities, low income persons, immigrants, Aboriginals, seniors, etc).  These enterprises are described as “key actors in mobilizing volunteers” with the 138 survey respondents having a total of 6,500 volunteers.

Co-operative and Social Enterprise Examples

Co-operatives and social enterprises strive to create a blended return on investment, both financial and social, rather than just maximizing profits for shareholders.  For examples in New Brunswick, see the Social Enterprise video series on CECNB’s website.

For more information