New Council support for cooperatives and social enterprises announced

At least 50 cooperatives and social enterprises in Hackney will be able to access dedicated business support as part of a new package of Hackney Council measures to help the growth, resilience and future-proofing of socially-conscious businesses in the borough.

The support offer, announced as part of International Day of Cooperatives 2023 and the Hackney Coops Weekend, includes three new commitments to help deliver on the Council’s ambitions to support the continuing growth of the local cooperative community:

  • A Council-led programme of start-up and scale-up advice and training ringfenced for socially-focussed businesses rooted in local communities, due to be launched in autumn 2023
  • A new Council-commissioned independent research report making recommendations on how Hackney Council can create the right environment for social businesses to thrive and sell more products and services to the public sector
  • A new Council commitment to support the delivery of Social Value Roadmap 2032 – Social Enterprise UK’s plan to embed social value in the private and public sector –  across all of its activities.

The new training and advice programme, to be delivered by Hackney Council and partners including Hackney Cooperative Developments, the Social Founders Network and the East End Trades Guild, will support up to 350 businesses in Hackney, building on £2.5 million in direct Council investment to support businesses’ recovery from the pandemic.

At least 50 of these will be ringfenced for cooperatives – which includes all organisations run by and in the interest of their members – as well as other socially conscious businesses such as social enterprises.

Cllr Sam Pallis, Inclusive Business, Social Enterprise and Cooperatives Champion

Hackney has a proud history within the cooperative movement, and these plans are part of ensuring we have a proud future too – with a local economy that supports businesses that are run not just for profit but for the good of their employees and the wider community. 

Whether it’s insourcing council services or supporting socially-conscious business, we want to create a fairer, genuinely inclusive economy in Hackney, which is why we’re supporting the fantastic cooperatives and social enterprises in our borough to grow and thrive.

Cllr Sam Pallis, Inclusive Business, Social Enterprise and Cooperatives Champion

The announcement as part of Hackney Coops Weekend follows a year in which Hackney Council became a member of the Cooperative Councils’ Innovation Network, agreed new investment to support the setting up of new cooperatives, and celebrated the re-opening of Bradbury Works – a brand new cooperative managed affordable workspace delivered with council support.