CBH leads nation

18/11/2014 - 05:03

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Western Australia is leading the country when it comes to the cooperative and mutual business sector, with three local operations named amid the nation’s five largest.

CBH leads nation

Western Australia is leading the country when it comes to the cooperative and mutual business sector, with three local operations named amid the nation’s five largest.

CBH Group has been recognised as the largest cooperative in Australia - judged by its annual operational revenue of $2.8 billion for the year ending September 2013.

That revenue figure was a 23 per cent increase on the previous corresponding period. The group's total turnover with revenue from harvest pools factored in was $3.36 billion.

It was also more than double that of WA’s second largest cooperative - HBF - which achieved $1.34 billion revenue in the year to June 2014 and $1.28 billion a year earlier.

Those results put HBF in fourth place on the national front - beaten by Victorian dairy business Murray Goulburn, which had revenue of $2.39 billion, and east coast health fund HCF with $2.13 billion.

Another WA business, the Capricorn Society, was named fifth largest in the country in the report. Its annual revenue reached $89.7 million in the year to June 2014, up from $82.4 million.

However, its facilitation of $1.21 billion worth of member transactions prompted its fifth-place ranking.

The RAC of WA was ranked ninth while the Geraldton Fishermen’s Co-operative and the Western Australian Meat Marketing Co-op were ranked 31st and 32nd respectively.

The P&N Bank was ranked 34th largest in Australia.

Overall the report found Australia’s top 100 cooperative and mutual enterprises had combined turnover of more than $104 billion in the 2012-13 financial year when superannuation funds were included.

CBH Group chief executive Andrew Crane, who is also chair of the BCCM, said the research indicated the economic benefit from the sector was being overlooked.

“Cooperatives and member owned businesses are an under recognised sector of the nation’s economy,” Dr Crane said.

“Australia has 1,700 member-owned businesses providing numerous benefits to their 13 million members.

“Cooperatives and mutuals are also big investors in Australian infrastructure from ports, rail and irrigation systems to road, housing and manufacturing plants.”

The report found that WA accounted for 27 per cent of the top 100 cooperatives’ annual turnover, despite only 13 of the top 100 being located in WA.

The largest in WA also account for a significant amount of the nation’s activity in their niche markets; CBH Group exports 40 per cent of the country’s grain, Capricorn Society purchases almost a quarter of the nation’s automotive parts and the Geraldton Fishermen’s Co-operative is the world’s largest exporter of rock lobster.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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