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Wild Root Market


Understanding Our Ongoing Push for New Owners

Co-op experts recommend ownership thresholds for each phase of development to ensure a co-op can open and thrive over time; they’re essential to smart business planning. Based on the results of the market study conducted by our site consultant last November, we’ve set a goal to have 1,500 owners by the time we open.

We keep getting asked the question, "Do you still need Owners?" and when the answer is, "Of course!", some folks apparently conclude there's something wrong. Indeed not! It’s important to understand that co-ops recruit owners forever. We’re simply observing sound, proven business practices.

The experts also tell us a co-op in the Racine/Kenosha area should expect to have about 4,500 owners at year five. So the push for new owners doesn’t stop even once we’re up and running! Growing its list of owners is an ongoing part of every successful co-op's best practices. It’s just the way co-ops, which are community-supported organizations, work: they seek continual support from the ever-changing communities they serve.

Think about the numbers again: we’re aiming for 1,500 owners before we open…and expect to have about 4,500 by our fifth anniversary. That means we're recruiting 1/3 of that five-year benchmark before the doors even open! So our ongoing push means we’re paying attention to expert counsel and building a co-op to last that will thrive over time!

Today, Wild Root Market has 330 Owners and growing. So while our 1,500 goal represents a difference of almost 1,200 ownership subscriptions from where we are today, we're confident we can reach this goal. Why? Because when we registered 242 Owners during the month of last August alone, the experts said this response was unprecedented. This told us something of which we were already convinced: Racine, Kenosha and the surrounding communities are ready for a food co-op! Secondly, we have over 1,300 people on our mailing list. While some are Owners, others are not, yet they have an obvious interest in news of our progress. Our goal is to convert as many as possible from “interested observer” to Owner. Lastly, our Owners have a vested interest in the success of this business venture. When each of our Owners meets the challenge to recruit just two additional Owners, we’ll exceed 1,000 Owners in no time. 

Everyone who becomes an Owner before we open understands that we can and should become one of the 345 communities in the U.S. that already has co-ops. The positive economic impact grocery co-ops have on their communities is undeniable: they account for close to $2.1B in sales revenue, more than 15,000 jobs, $252M in wages and benefits, and $316M in valued-added income according to the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives.

You may have already seen the timeline our Board has sketched - an ever-changing but good and important guide. In it, we proclaimed our commitment to work alongside our current Owners to reach the following milestones:

600 Owners by July 1, 2012

1,050 Owners by October 1, 2012

1,500 Owners by December 31, 2012!

Owners automatically become invested ambassadors. So whether you joined last August and earned the special designation of Founding Owner or you’re distinguished as a Pioneering Owner by joining before the doors open, we’re all equally invested in the success of Wild Root Market! So please learn all you can about co-ops, in general, and Wild Root Market, in particular, so you can share that information often, accurately and with confidence. Help us help our community grow its own co-operatively-owned, full-service grocery store. Join today!


Colleen Wilkinson

Chair, Ownership Development

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Other stories

Excited to join!

Speaks for itself...

We've received so many of these awesome words of encouragement and excitement from new Owners! It fills us with renewed energy and gratitude.

A great reminder of why we're doing what we're doing

New Board Members!

We're thrilled to announce the appointment of Marion Dow-Vass and Erik Hokanson, both accounting and finance professionals, to the Board of Directors. We're thrilled to have their collective expertise at this critical juncture in our development! 

Wild Root Market Community Partners

Did you know that some area businesses are offering special discounts to Wild Root Market Owners? We are so grateful for the interest and support of our business community – please let them know you are, too! Check them out here.

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