Webinar: Succession Planning for Purchasing Coops and their Members

Employee ownership: Keeping businesses independent when family can’t take over

Succession planning is an urgent need among an increasing number of businesses, especially as baby boomers near retirement age. Because purchasing cooperatives are an important part of helping their independent business members stay independent, competitive and rooted in their communities, the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA CLUSA) has partnered with Project Equity to better understand the succession challenges of purchasing cooperative member companies, and to assess how employee ownership transitions can help keep these companies independent over the long term.

Join NCBA CLUSA, Project Equity and our purchasing cooperative panelists to learn more about how purchasing coops and other independent business networks can utilize employee ownership and worker cooperative conversions to help locally-owned businesses stay locally-owned for the long term.

In this recorded webinar, you’ll learn:

  • How converting a business to employee ownership works
  • Approaches to financing employee buy-outs
  • Education programs you can implement across your business network
  • General timeline and cost to consider for conversion

Webinar recording

Recorded December 6, 2016

[Recording coming soon]

Just released!

New studies in regions across the U.S., including Washington StateBerkeley and Long Beach, CA show millions of businesses at risk and point to employee ownership as a solution.

Free consultation

for businesses interested in employee ownership.
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Webinar participants


Bryan Munson

Business Development Manager, NCBA

A 10-year marketing and business development professional with a diverse portfolio in entertainment and media (Universal Music Group, iHeartRadio, Nintendo, MTV), non- and not-for-profit (Nationwide Insurance, National Cooperative Business Association, Domains.coop) and food & beverage (Grand Marnier, Cabot Creamery Cooperative, Organic Valley, Muscle Maker Grill).

At the National Cooperative Business Association, I lead a business unit responsible for building lasting and meaningful partnerships with service providers that cater to the core needs of our member cooperatives, developing and executing omni-channel marketing plans focused on alliance strategies, event sponsorship activations and educational programming.


Jack Bailey

President & CEO, Independent Distributors Cooperative-USA

Jack Bailey received his Bachelor’s degree and Juris Doctorate from Indiana University, becoming a member of the Indiana State Bar in 1984. Bailey served on the Board of Directors for the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) and a Delegate since 1997. He served on the Public Resources for Cooperative Development Committee, and the Emerging Issues Committee. Additionally, he has been a repeat presenter at the NCBA Purchasing Conference.

Bailey was the recipient of the 2002 Blue Chip Community Business Award for his leadership in guiding the cooperative through adverse challenges to the level of prosperity it enjoys today. In 2008 he received the George E. Johnston Excellence Award for his achievements in the cooperative community. He has traveled globally in pursuit of opportunities for cooperative members he serves and in 2010 was inducted into the Indiana Cooperative Hall of Fame. Bailey is passionate about the role of cooperatives in the global community and a frequent speaker and consultant both here and abroad.

Stephen K. Irvin

President & CEO, Amicus Solar Cooperative

Since it’s founding in 2011, Stephen has been President and CEO of Amicus Solar Cooperative, the first purchasing cooperative in the U.S. solar energy industry. Amicus is jointly owned and democratically managed by its membership of solar development, EPC, and installation companies. Amicus currently supports over 40 member companies across 29 states, Puerto Rico, and Canada, which employ over 1,500 solar energy professionals. Stephen led the creation of Amicus while serving as CFO for Namasté Solar, a Colorado-based solar company, which specializes in the design, construction, and long-term monitoring and maintenance of solar PV systems. Stephen was one of the original employee-owners of Namasté Solar, and treasured playing a small part in the evolution of its unique business model. Before Namasté Solar, Stephen worked in academia on the non-market valuation of public goods, renewable energy incentive programs, and irrigation and water supply projects in developing countries, such as Nepal, Ghana, Ethiopia, and Afghanistan. Stephen’s publications include the “Economic Valuation of River Systems” and various working papers supported by the National Science Foundation. Before academia, his early career included four years at Chase Manhattan Bank and The Provident Bank. Stephen has a B.S. in Mathematics from Vanderbilt University, an M.S. in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics from The Ohio State University, and a M.A. in Economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Alison Lingane

Co-founder, Project Equity

Alison Lingane started her career in community-based work, designing and leading micro-enterprise programs for urban youth. Inspired to gain skills to bring programs to scale that create real opportunity for people, she left to get her MBA, and co-founded what is now the Global Social Venture Competition, the largest international business plan competition for double or triple bottom line businesses. Prior to launching Project Equity, Alison spent 15 years in executive roles at mission-driven companies that are designed to have human impact at scale. A serial ‘social entrepreneur,’ Alison co-founded a thriving PreK-8th grade dual immersion school that now serves over 360 students. Her passion for building businesses as a force for good lead her to her partnership with Hilary Abell in founding Project Equity. Alison has her B.A. from Harvard University and her MBA from the Haas School of Business, and she is a 2014 Echoing Green Fellow.

View our recorded webinars

Rebuilding with resiliency and equity through Employee Ownership

recorded August 20, 2020

Employee Ownership 101

recorded on August 18, 2020

Reenvisioning Retail: The Future of Retail (Hosted by Lives Empowered)

recorded July 24, 2020

Employee ownership: A business succession strategy in challenging times

recorded June 9, 2020

Increasing Equity in a Post-Pandemic Economy: The Potential for Growing Worker Ownership (Hosted by The Aspen Institute)

recorded May 19, 2020

Employee ownership: How it works
recorded March 2020

Attract and retain the best talent with employee ownership
recorded June 26, 2019

Sell your business with employee ownership
recorded June 18, 2019

​Participatory Management
recorded July 2018

Worker Transitions vs. Roll-ups
recorded August 2017

Impact Investing in Worker Cooperatives, How to get involved
recorded April 2017

Succession Planning: How to Engage Purchasing Coop Members in Their Future
recorded March 2017

Succession Planning for Purchasing Coops and their Members 
recorded December 2016

Creative Sources of Capital for your Cooperative
recorded September 2016

The Lending Opportunity of a Generation: Investing in businesses converting to worker ownership
recorded March 2016

The Cooperative Growth Ecosystem
recorded January 2016

Why Worker Coop Conversions and Ownership Make Sense Now
recorded October 2015

Succession Planning, Opportunities and Benefits of Employee Ownership
recorded August 2015

Scaling the Development of Worker-Owned Cooperatives
recorded July 2015

Converting Businesses to Worker Cooperatives
recorded April 2015

Blueprint for Increasing Worker Ownership in Low Income Communities
recorded March 2015

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