Approx 509 words. 2.5 mins to read.

Every year, Co-op holds an Annual General Meeting (AGM) where eligible Co-op Members can cast their votes and find out the latest news. Held on 6 June 2020, it looked different this year because of lockdown. Tuning in from home, I was pleased to still have the chance to hear from Co-op. As a Member Pioneer, I’m proud of all we’ve achieved.

What a year it’s been…

Opening this year’s AGM, Chair of the Co-op Allan Leighton said: ‘The world is a very different place than it was 12 months ago. Our values and way of doing business have allowed us to go above and beyond in these incredible times.’

Bolstered by our strong performance in 2018, Chief Finance Officer, Shirine Khoury-Haq, was pleased to share that we had a good 2019 and have seen underlying profit before tax increase by 50% to £50m.

For more information on our business highlights, read our Co-op annual report.

The power of co-operation

Co-op Chief Executive Steve Murrells started this year’s presentations with a heartfelt thank you to colleagues.

Funeralcare teams have supported families around the UK, such as Jayne from our Blackpool branch. She arranged a funeral for a local entertainer and took him on a final journey leading to the working men’s club where he sang.

As a national retailer, we’ve played a critical role in feeding the nation. For example, colleagues in Socketts Heath delivered 800 bottles of water to Queen’s Hospital, Romford after their water fountains were turned off to prevent spreading the virus.

We offered 5,000 roles to people who suddenly found themselves out of a job. We’re rewarding frontline colleagues with a £150 bonus and an extra day’s holiday.

Caring for our communities in a crisis

Since the outbreak of coronavirus in the UK, we’ve responded in a truly Co-op way. Our initiatives have included:

  • Co-op Members’ Coronavirus Fund: we asked members to donate their unspent 5% rewards to local foodbanks, causes and funeral hardship funds.
  • We pledged £4m in food and advertising airtime to FareShare.
  • We launched our Co-operate platform to link communities and encourage co-operation.

Co-operating for a fairer world

To wrap up, Steve said: ‘We’ve shown what co-operation can do in a crisis. Now we need to show what it has to offer to the world when the crisis recedes.’

Our Co-op will play its part. We’re going to adapt, be ambitious and address challenges that people will continue to face.

It won’t be easy. You are already part of the future we need to create as we pull through this crisis – and look beyond it.

While this year’s AGM was definitely different, it brought us all together to champion a bigger cause: building on our success and keeping the momentum going.

The results are in…

If you want to know how members voted on our motions, find out who was elected as a Member Nominated Director and see who’s been chosen as voices for your communities on our Members’ Council, head to our website.

Want to watch the event yourself? Head to Co-op’s Youtube channel.

Thanks to everyone who had their say.

Kym Withers,
Member Pioneer for Weston Super Mare

Read more on members getting involved with Co-op;

Join the conversation! 54 Comments

  1. That’s wonderful to hear Sandra. Thank you so much for sharing. ^Cat

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