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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S6W-03731
Asked by: Claire Baker, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 13 October 2021


To ask the Scottish Government how it is encouraging and supporting co-operative business models and community ownership as a core part of the economic recovery from COVID-19.

Current status: Answered by Ivan McKee on 1 November 2021


There is a significant and increasing interest in co-operative business models in Scotland. Co-operative models are collaborative vehicles that play an important role in creating sustainable growth. They enable employees, businesses and communities to work together to fulfil shared interests. This unlocks creativity and capacity and there is growing evidence that they increase productivity, innovation and growth whilst achieving wider societal benefits.

Co-operative Development Scotland (CDS) is the arm of Scottish Enterprise working in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise and South of Scotland Enterprise to support company growth through collaborative co-operative and employee ownership business models. CDS raises awareness of the value of co-operative and employee ownership models, and provides specialist advice. Its services are integrated to those of Scottish Enterprise (SE), Highlands & Islands Enterprise and Business Gateway.

Scotland for EO is the industry leadership group (ILG) for employee owned businesses in Scotland, established in 2018 to empower the employee owned sector to direct its own development. Led by industry working in partnership with the public sector, the group champions employee ownership in Scotland and drives industry-wide collaboration and alignment.

Working with the industry leadership group the Scottish Government is committed to increasing the number of employee owned businesses in Scotland to 500 by 2030.