A Decentralized Platform for Cooperative Investments
Besides funding its own growth via crowdfunded solutions and offering investors funding options via Coopfunding, Bank of the Commons is committed to offering a platform of services for CoopShares social equity funding and trading.
One of the greatest problems faced by cooperatives, social enterprises, and peer production initiatives, is the lack of access to sufficient funding and investment: one of the main reasons why corporations dominate the global economy.
Nevertheless, as many smaller projects are flourishing, more and more people are turning to cooperative ways of organizing, increasing the demand for larger projects and more suitable investment solutions.
In response to this challenge and in order to offer a solution to overcome 1) the scarcity of available and useful tools that facilitate investment in cooperatives, and 2) the legal difficulties encountered when investing in a coop without becoming a member, CoopShares aims to be a platform tailored towards widespread use – allowing buying, exchanging and selling tokens of democratic collective ownership, such as various types of cooperatives: land, housing, vehicles, works of art, or social currencies, amongst others.
In this way, it offers its services as an means to enable next-generation social and economic contracts, where collective property replaces private property, and resources are managed and distributed across the collective under its own governance.
Bank of the Commons is actively supporting and participating in cutting-edge innovative solutions such as CoopShares, in order to help build the broader based services needed in the fast-growing Commons ecosystem.
In the economic shift from Welfare to Commonfare, our goal is to offer a platform designed as a toolkit which has been designed to form part of an efficient human-centered working framework.
In Bank of the Commons, a share is defined as a unit of participation, and the amount you choose to invest will form your share of the Bank of the Commons social capital. This social share capital is used to fund Bank of the Commons projects.
The principle of one member, one vote applies in Bank of the Commons.
- When the coop grows in social capital, the number of shares also grow, rather than the value of these shares (1share=1Euro).
- When its social capital decreases, the number of shares goes down, not the value of these shares (1share=1Euro).
This means that cooperative tokens cannot be speculative assets, which is the way things are at the moment with crypto assets.
So, the one-sided perception held by mainstream investors is that cooperatives or social enterprises cannot and/or are not allowed to be profitable. Even ethical and cooperative banks are often reluctant to invest in these kinds of projects, or they invest only small amounts, severely hampering starting or growing anything larger than the smallest or least capital-intensive enterprises.
CoopShares is applying blockchain technology solutions which adhere to the principles explained above.