More Info for Conversions

Are you a business owner considering transitioning your business to a worker cooperative? Or an employee seeking information about how to purchase an existing business and convert to a worker cooperative? 

Below are resources from our Resource Library about business conversion. And visit our Conversion Projects page to learn more about how the Institute supports owners and employees during the conversion process. 

Resources for Conversions

Worker Co-ops: Weathering the Storm of COVID-19

Mo Manklang, Zen Trenholm, Olga Prushinskaya
In this moment of crisis, worker cooperatives are a reliable, proven solution to address the loss of jobs and income inequality.
COVID-19 has devastated the small business community, and the clock is ticking on permanent shutdowns of small businesses. 45 percent of businesses believe they have less than six months until a permanent shutdown is unavoidable. Tens of millions are still unemployed. Millions of Americans will fall off an “income cliff” when unemployment benefits end. 

Decisions in the Process of Business Transition (Who Decides What?)


Before a cooperative transition process can get started, the selling owner needs to make some decisions about how to structure the process, specifically she needs to clearly define who has decision-making power in the process: herself, the transition committee, the likely coop members, and the whole group. This chart outlines who decides what.  

Small Business Ownership Succession: The Cooperative Solution

Northcountry Cooperative Foundation
A sale to employees can provide an owner with significant tax breaks. Because of the IRC §1042 Capital Gains Rollover, business owners who sell at least 30% of the stock in their C-Corporation to an employee-owned cooperative can roll over the proceeds from the sale into qualified replacement securities and defer payment of any capital gains tax indefinitely.

Projecting the Long-Term Consequences of ESOP vs. Co-op Conversion of a Firm on Employee Benefits and Company Cash

Jaques Kaswan
This report provides a detailed examination of the benefits received by departing employees of a company converted to 100% employee ownership either as an ESOP or a Co-op over a 15 year period. It also studies the net cash retained by the ESOP or Co-op firm over the same time-span. It discusss the some theoretical and practical implications related to the two forms of employee ownership.