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What is a business cooperative?

A business cooperative is an entity that is owned and controlled by the businesses or people who use its services. It generally exists for the benefit of its owners and is formed because the cooperative can accomplish more than any of its owners can accomplish independently.
Cooperatives operate successfully in every sector of our economy. In fact, many familiar companies and brands are cooperatives, including: Ocean Spray, Land O’Lakes, ACE Hardware, Associated Press and Best Western.



What are the fundamental principles of a cooperative?

  • The people or businesses that own the cooperative use the cooperative.
  • The people or businesses that control the cooperative use the cooperative.
  • The cooperative’s sole purpose is to provide and distribute benefits to its users on the basis of use (patronage).

How does OneWorld originate income?

  • OneWorld has negotiated volume pricing with various business service organizations. This volume pricing is available to all OneWorld members. The providers of these business services pay OneWorld a negotiated rebate based upon usage.
  • OneWorld has negotiated preferred funding programs with various commercial finance lenders based upon certain volume assumptions. These preferred programs and preferred pricing are available to all OneWorld members. These preferred funders pay OneWorld a rebate based upon volume and usage.
  • OneWorld invites new potential members to join the cooperative and those members who are selected are charged a membership fee. This membership fee will be modified from time to time to reflect the current market.

How are profits distributed at OneWorld?

  • At the end of each year, OneWorld accounts for its total income and expenses. The income remaining after all operating expenses are deducted and appropriate reserves are calculated, is distributed on a patronage basis subject to the approval of the Board of Directors.
  • A member’s share of the profits, the patronage allocation, is based on the amount of business that member conducted with OneWorld preferred funders and suppliers in that year and the amount of fee income generated from that business activity.
  • The Board of Directors determines annually how the profit will be returned to members. The profit portion, or patronage allocation, allocated to a member may be paid in cash, may be retained as investment in OneWorld in the member’s name, or may be a combination of cash and retained investment.

For more information on cooperatives, see the following links:

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