727 words, approx. 3.5 minutes to read.

So how are we doing so far this year?

Well if you’re reading this and you’re a member of our Co-op then it’s good news. Between the start of January and the end of June, we gave back £29m through our 5% member reward and a further £6m to 4,000 local causes through our 1% community reward.

This is your Co-op doing what any good Co-op should – creating ‘value’ for its members.

You can read our half-year reportand our press release on our webpages to see the detailed sales and profit numbers. This infographic summarises the ‘big’ numbers.

All of our businesses are reporting good performance and that’s what creates the value we can share with you.

You own us

When you hear other big businesses reporting their profits you probably think it doesn’t have much to do with you. And you’d be right. After all, it’s only their shareholders that are gaining anything. But that’s not how the Co-op works because that’s not how we’re owned. And that’s the big difference.

We’ve been able to give back £35m, so far this year, because you shop in our food stores, you buy our electrical products, you insure your car and home with us, and you use our funeral, life planning and legal services. Thank you for being such good customers!

Value with values

But there’s more to creating value for you as a Co-op member than direct financial rewards. The way we run our business is fundamental to who we are and it’s import to report back to you on this as well.

So, we’re backing British farmers by selling only British fresh meat all year round. The same goes for the meat in all of our Co-op sandwiches and pies.

We’ve strengthened our commitment to our Fairtrade partners with our decision to use only Fairtrade sourced cocoa in own brand products.

We’re helping young drivers to be safe and save money through our Co-op Young Drivers insurance. 

We’ve increased the age for providing free child funerals from 16 to 18.

We’ve hired 333 apprentices in the first half of 2017. We’ll have recruited 1,000 apprentices in total by the end of the year.

Sixty new member pioneers have been recruited to dedicated roles to better connect our Co-op with local communities. We’ll have 200 in place by the end of the year.

We’ve added two more schools to our Co-op Academies Trust (now ten in total) raising standards in the classroom and restoring local pride.

Your campaigning Co-op 

In the spring we renewed our commitment to be a campaigning Co-op taking us back to our boldest traditions.

We’re taking a lead on reducing Modern Slavery through our Bright Future programme giving training and paid work to the victims of slavery in the UK.

We’re tackling loneliness and isolation in partnership with British Red Cross by recruiting Community Connectors across the UK with the money you helped to raise. And our Co-op Foundation is helping young people to become more involved in this work too.

We’re taking action at an international level too as the first retailer in the world to sign up to the Global Investment Fund for Water. 1p from each litre of branded bottled water we sell now goes to eliminating water poverty. That’s on top of the existing water projects we fund through our Co-op bottled water.

As you can see, we are a business that cares about the things that matter to you.

A better way

With all we’re doing to demonstrate our Co-op difference, it’s not surprising that we’ve attracted half a million new members since the start of the year and more than a million since last September when we re-launched our new Co-op Membership scheme. There’s a growing understanding that the Co-op is a better way of doing business and through our actions we’re proving it.

Of course, there’s always more work to do. To keep creating that member value we have respond to changing customer needs and ever more challenging markets. So we’ll continue to improve and innovate and look for new ways to support our members.

Finally, let me thank you, our members, for making us what we are and recognising that by choosing the Co-op good things can happen. Please tell your friends and family too. We want the whole nation to benefit from being part of the Co-op.

Steve Murrells
Co-op Group CEO

Join the conversation! 18 Comments

  1. […] The news release we’ve issued to the media this morning reflects our different way of measuring Co-op performance, measures that no other business can match. You can also read the blog post I’ve written to members. […]

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  2. Not happy with Co-Op since you closed ours in the Parade in Oadby Leicester. I always shopped there daily. Miss ot terribly I don’t drive so it is hard to go to the big supermarket. Not Happy.

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  3. Dear Margaret, I appreciate your loss and I know it is not very helpful but the Parade store at Oadby did not belong to the Coop Group but to Central England Coop. They have another Store in Oadby at Uplands Road.
    Best wishes,
    Nick

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  4. Very disappointed. Took out funeral plans for myself and my wife and were told we would get the 5% bonus. However, we are now informed that because we took out plans with Central Co-op we are not entitled to this 5%. Nothing was explained regarding the fact that Central Co-op is different from the Co-op, of which we have been a member for many years. We were informed quite clearly that we would be entitled to the 5%, therefore the staff were ignorant of the difference.

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    • Hi Martin, Apologies this was not explained to yourself and your wife upfront, if you message me your details, (karen.taylor@centralengland.coop) I will give you a call and we can discuss a resolution for you. Many thanks.

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    • Sorry about that Martin. Central England Co-operative Society are a separate business so do not participate in our Membership scheme.
      ^Sophie

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  5. All very well announcing big profits but staff moral is low and everybody is so tired. Managers are put under to much pressure. Do people at head office have to work until 11pm at night and work on Sundays all for £7,71 an hour . if you don’t look after your staff your business will fail

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    • Hi Paul, have you made these feelings known in Talkback? http://coop.uk/2hifyla ^Jordan

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    • Dave, I work at head office. Still working at home tonight at 10.30pm,another 14 hour day, I’ll probably work through this weekend like the last two. I’m on a salary so effectively at £0 ph.
      My role involves visiting stores, so no way dismissing the hard work of our passionate colleagues on the ‘front line’, but there seems to be a general view that the people in head office don’t work hard. In the most part it’s not what I see.
      We’re all expected to do too much, for too little reward. Succeed together – overworked together!

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      • John, I’m not surprised so many people at the Co-Op are over worked & under paid. I work in a food store & regularly talk to other colleagues who are unhappy. The ruthless cost cutting exercises have certainly taken their toll. I have become completely disillusioned by the direction the Co-Op is going in. I routinely have to unload & work deliveries by myself, which is literally back breaking work. The endless cuts to staffing levels & resources are crazy & self defeating. The customers are fed up with the long queues, staff feel exploited & ignored, meanwhile all I read is press releases about how fantastic Co-Op is doing. Well put your money where your mouth is Co-Op & pay a decent wage to the people who are making your profits!

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  6. Great results in a very competitive market. I especially like the way we call out the ‘Co-op difference’ before we talk about turnover and profit. I don’t see any other retailer doing this and it truly does make us different, for the right reasons.

    On a side note, it’s disappointing, after the major investment in the new branding to see the majority of national press and media all using older ‘Co-operative’ images. Do we accompany our press releases with up-to-date images they can easily use?

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    • Thanks Keith. Yes, we do provide new images. I know our PR team are currently working through some of the main titles to update images where possible. ^Jordan

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  7. It would be good to know how many members benefited from the £29m through the 5% member reward, including as a percentage of the total membership. It’s all very well saying we’ve attracted more than a million new members since last September, but how many of them regularly trade with us?

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  8. […] weeks ago I explained how our 4.5m Co-op Group members (our owners) had benefitted from £35m that we’d returned to them and their communities during the first half of th…. We achieved that through well run businesses competing in the market place but without putting […]

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  9. […] weeks ago I explained how our 4.5m Co-op Group members (our owners) had benefitted from £35m that we’d returned to them and their communities during the first half of th…. We achieved that through well run businesses competing in the market place but without putting […]

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