April 17, 2008 - News

'Little hardware store that could' closer to reopening
After a year without their neighbourhood landmark, a group of former customers are on the verge of reopening an 85-year-old hardware store in Winnipeg's North End. Since Pollock Hardware closed last year, residents and customers have been trying to raise enough money to buy the store and operate it as a co-op. At least one of their purchase offers was rejected — but now, a tentative deal is on the table, and the group thinks the store could reopen by spring. Tom Simms, volunteer with the interim board of directors for the Pollock Hardware Store Co-op said the group is pushing for a five-year lease-to-purchase agreement. The group, he said, is using a combination of equity capital from contributing members and loan capital from a credit union. The co-op is also in partnership with the provincial government's Community Development Tax Credit Program, which will give investors a 30 per cent tax credit.

Community Mill meeting in Chesley
Everything you wanted to know about setting up a community wheat and corn milling operation will be revealed at a special meeting this afternoon in Chesley. Meeting Organizer Tom Slumskie says the North American representative of the Italian Company Agrex will be the featured speaker. Agrex is a company that has set up some 400 community milling operations around the world. Slumskie says this meeting will explore the possibility of setting up a co operative mill in Grey Bruce that would allow local cash crop producers to have their product processed closer to home rather than ship it to Toronto. He says some of the proposals they are looking at would require 25 to 75 tonnes per day. Slumski says with the popularity of the so called 100 mile diet movement these days more and more people in Grey Bruce want to purchase flour that is produced right at home and support local producers.

The Co-operators Announces Strong Year-End Financial Results, New Member-Owners and $1 Million Boost to Foundation
The Co-operators Group Ltd. announced strong financial results, the continued expansion of its co-operative ownership base and a $1 million contribution to The Co-operators Foundation as the organization wrapped up its Annual General Meeting (AGM) in its hometown of Guelph, Ontario today. The Canadian group of companies produced net income of $154.8 million in 2007, up from $133.4 million the previous year. The strong financial performance allowed the organization to make an unprecedented contribution of more than $1 million to The Co-operators Foundation, through which it reinvests in Canadian communities. "First and foremost, our strong financial performance allows us to be there for our clients when they need us most - that's what insurance is all about," said Kathy Bardswick, president and CEO of The Co-operators. "Also, as a Canadian co-operative committed to supporting our communities, it allows us to give back in a big way. Putting $1 million into The Co-operators Foundation will help us provide meaningful financial support to improve the quality of life in our communities for years and decades to come." This is the largest single commitment of funding the organization has ever put into The Co-operators Foundation, through which financial assistance is provided to social economy enterprises and other worthy causes in Canada. The balance of the Foundation now stands at nearly $6 million.