Co-operative and Community Finance

Financial aid is available for the support of the development of cooperatives or employee-owned businesses and social enterprises in the UK for general business needs, including loans on property, business purchase, capital equipment and working capital.

ICOF manages a number of loan funds throughout the UK.  Many are specific to cities, eg London, Manchester, Cardiff, Swansea and Wakefield, and others covering larger areas, eg East and West Midlands or parts of South Wales.  For those areas not covered by specific funds, the following are available:

  • ICOF plc - a national fund for worker cooperatives.
  • Community Capital and Co-operative Loans - a UK-wide fund available for community businesses and any other trading organisation within the social economy.

Advice is offered to borrowers throughout the term of the loan, as part of the funding package.

Loans from £10,000 to £75,000 are normally available, however, from other funds under the sponsor's management they are able to lend up to £150,000.  Loans to new businesses are usually part of a larger financial package and not normally more than 50% of that package.

There is no set lending term; as far as is possible, loans will be tailored to the needs of the business and the capacity to make repayments.  The maximum term is usually ten years.