Start a Coop

All corporations must have a constitution. This is a set of rules and processes for the internal running of the corporation. Legislation for co-operatives refers to the constitution as the ‘Rules”.  

The rules for each co-operative must describe the main activities that the co-operative will undertake, and how each member commits to support the co-operative’s activities. The rules also provide processes for voting, meetings, electing the directors and reporting to members.

The rules and any disclosure statement must be approved by the Registrar of Co-operatives in the State or Territory that you plan to have your main office or place of business. 

The Get Mutual Co-op Builder is a FREE step-by-step tool to help groups prepare the rules and disclosure statement for any type of co-operative in any industry. It provides plain English information about how the rules work and how to draft components of your disclosure statement. 

One of the first steps is to know who the members of your co-op are, which is part of business planning.

Need to raise finance to start your co-operative? Head over to Run a Co-op and read our Raise Finance section for new and existing co-operatives. 

The initial development of the Co-op Builder was funded by the Federal Government to help farmers and other primary producers to form co-operatives. Farmer groups can access the Co-op Builder along with additional resources for farmers at Farming TogetherThe Get Mutual Co-op Builder is designed to suit any co-operative enterprise or purpose. It is published under licence from the Commonwealth of Australia.

The Get Mutual Co-op Builder is a FREE step-by-step tool to help groups prepare and understand the legal documents required to form a co-operative in Australia.

There are three steps to registering your co-operative.

Looking for help to start your co-op? The BCCM offers support, information and resources for new groups looking to start or register a co-operative.