1st Edition

The Consumer Co-operative Sector International Perspectives on Strategic Renewal

    252 Pages 26 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Globally, consumer co-operation has experienced a difficult period since the 1970s. Large scale failures in France, Germany and Austria were accompanied by loss of market share in the UK (including the failure of the Scottish Co-operative Wholesale Society and its takeover by its English counterpart). Even in the Nordic countries, where consumer co-operation has always been more robust, new challenges from the non-co-operative sector had to be confronted. How did co-operative organizations in different countries cope with these challenges? What were the processes of strategic renewal that they undertook? How successful were they? These are the key questions that the collection will address, culminating in an analysis by the editors of the effectiveness of strategic renewal in the co-operative sector. This book is a study of strategic renewal in the consumer co-operative sector, using eleven international case-studies to demonstrate how the concept has been applied over the last fifty years.

    Chapters 2 and 3 of this book is freely available as a downloadable Open Access PDF at http://www.taylorfrancis.com under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives (CC-BY-NC-ND) 4.0 license.

    1.  Strategic renewal in the consumer co-operative sector: an international study

    John F. Wilson, Anthony Webster, Espen Ekberg and Samuli Skurnik


    Section one: Scandinavia


    2. The darker Finnish consumer co-operative story: the fall of the workers’ E movement, c. 1950-1995

    Anitra Komulainen and Samuli Skurnik


    3. Creating competitive advantage through co-operativeness: the strategic renewal of the Finnish S Group since the early 1980s

    Samuli Skurnik


    4. When strategic renewal fails: 25 years of continuous losses at a large Norwegian consumer co-op, 1990-2014

    Espen Ekberg and Eivind Merok


    5. From the fall of Coop Norden to “long term boringness”: the Swedish co-op, 200-2020

    Fredrik Sandgren


    Section two: Europe


    6. Coping with crisis: strategic renewal in The Co-operative Group, 2013-23

    Anthony Webster and John F. Wilson


    7. The paradoxical relation between consumer co-operatives and transformation in French History since the 19th century

    Amelie Artis


    8. The case of Coop Consumatori, Italy: ambidexterity as a way to reconcile social and economics dimensions

    Patrizia Battilani


    Section three: Rest of the World


    9. Co-operative strategic renewal in Australia

    Greg Patmore and Nikola Balnave


    10. Eighty Years of Strategic Renewal at Federated Co-operatives Limited

    Dionne Pohler and Marc-André Pigeon


    11. Cooperative Identity, Participation and Sustainability: Innovations at iCOOP Korea

    Seungkwon Jang, Eunjong Lee and Jiyun Jeon


    12. Strategic renewal after the financial crisis: the Case of Co-op Sapporo

    Akira Kurimoto


    13. Themes, Lessons and Further Research

    John F. Wilson, Anthony Webster, Espen Ekberg and Samuli Skurnik


    John Wilson is Professor of Business History at Northumbria University Newcastle, UK. He has published extensively on the evolution of British business, including (with Tony Webster) a history of The Co-operative Group for its 150th anniversary.

    Anthony Webster is Professor of Business History at Northumbria University. He has researched and published widely on the history of business in the British Empire, and the international co-operative movement. He works closely with the Co-operative Group, is a Trustee of the Co-operative Heritage Trust and convenes the Co-operative Research Network (CoRNet) for the Co-operative College in Manchester.

    Espen Ekberg is Professor of Economic History and the current Head of the Centre for Business History at BI Norwegian Business School, Oslo, Norway. His main research interests include financial history, maritime history, the history of retailing and historiography. He has published several books, book chapters as well as articles in leading journals such as Business History, Journal of Global History and International Journal of Maritime History.

    Samuli Skurnik was Managing Director of Pellervo Coop Center in 1989-2003 (https://pellervo.fi/en/) and Research Director of Pellervo Economic Research Institute 1979-89 (www.ptt.fi). He is former vice-president of the Finnish Strategic Management Society (2003-11).