In 2016, the City of Minneapolis expanded its Business Technical Assistance Program (B-TAP) to include services aimed at supporting the development of new Minneapolis co-operatives by launching the Co-operative Technical Assistance Program (C-TAP). This program offers a free co-op feasibility training for potential and new cooperatives and existing businesses interested in converting into a cooperative. The program also provides one-on-one technical assistance (consulting).
The City desires to leverage the co-op model for maximum community benefit to:
- Act as an economic development tool to reduce poverty and promote social cohesion.
- Increase racial and ethnic diversity, and community ownership.
- Support innovation, community building, and local investment by encouraging a more collaborative business model.
Co-op Feasibility Training
The Co-op Feasibility Training covers topics including building a sustainable co-op enterprise, financial feasibility, co-op governance, legal framework and building a co-op feasibility study. Each class accepts between 12 and 15 cooperative ideas, with at least two participants from each idea. Participants will evaluate the feasibility of a co-op idea and/or to refine the model for cooperatives already in the process of incorporation.
Eligibility and registration for the Co-op Feasibility Training:
To be eligible for the training the cooperative must be located in the City of Minneapolis. Additionally, C-TAP asks that two to three representatives from each cooperative apply for the class.
- C-TAP Co-op Feasibility Training
- Wednesdays, April 7 – April 28. 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
- Register by March 31, 2021
Technical assistance for co-operatives
What is technical assistance?
Co-operative groups can receive up to 50 hours of one-on-one technical assistance (consulting) for your forming or existing cooperative through C-TAP. Technical assistance areas include but aren’t limited to:
- Business plan writing
- Legal services, including help with incorporation and bylaws
- Financial feasibility and loan packaging
- Member recruitment and community engagement
- Cooperative governance and board training
- Organizational structure
- Physical space layout, site selection, and negotiation
- Marketing and customer service
Eligibility to receive technical assistance:
To receive technical assistance, your group must have a feasible cooperative idea or an existing business/cooperative located, or to be located, in Minneapolis.
How to begin receiving services:
Contact our office directly and we will meet with you to help assess your needs and connect you to a provider.
C-TAP providers and how to become one
The service providers are organizations or consultants contracted with the City of Minneapolis to provide consulting services. Service providers are hired annually through a request for professional services. If your organization or business would like to be considered for providing technical assistance, please contact us.
The City of Minneapolis is seeking proposals from local non-profit and business consultants to provide direct business technical assistance to co-operatives located in Minneapolis. The total funding available in this solicitation is $75,000 and we expect to award it to multiple consultants.
Contact Emily Peterson, B-TAP Training Coordinator.