Frequently Asked Questions About Basics Co-op
Have a question? We have answers.
Click here for a copy of the Basics Ownership Enrollment Form. Simply print it out and bring it or mail it to Basics Cooperative at 1711 Lodge Drive, Janesville, Wisconsin 53545. You may also send your ownership fee with the form.
Basics Cooperative will each year in June hold the meeting. We will have food (including a pot luck), entertainment, and fun, as well as a meeting. Hope to see you there.
You can ask anyone at Basics for a copy.
First and foremost, you will be able to join the wonderful Basics family, working together to form a healthier community and planet. Basics Cooperative Owners democratically control the Co-op, and you will be able to help make all of the big decisions for the business. Here are some of the financial benefits to joining:
- 5% off purchases EVERY DAY! (10% for Owners over 65!)*
- Free or discounted admission to Co-op seminars, Free use of Basics Community Room.
- Case discounts (only available to Owners).
- Owner Mailings -- Many of the Co-op mailings go only to Owners.
- Co-op Reciprocity -- Get member pricing at most cooperatives in the country with your Basics Cooperative Ownership Card.
- Patronage Refunds -- If the board declares patronage dividends, you will receive a portion of the Co-op's profits based on the amount you shopped at Basics.
Co+op= We're Stronger Together! http://www.strongertogether.coop
*some exclusions may apply.
You can become a lifetime Owner of Basics Cooperative for $150. This is a one-time cost (not an annual fee) and represents your investment in the Co-op. If you decide you do not want to be an Owner anymore, the Co-op will refund your ownership fee (subject to some limitations in Bylaws -- see above). If you prefer not to pay the ownership fee all at once, you may pay over time, but you must pay at least $30 each year, and Basics will charge a $5 service fee each time you make a payment (after your first payment) to help defray the administrative costs. After the $150 is paid (plus any service fees) you are fully vested and there are not any more payments.
Only members of a household may share an ownership, and only two cards will be issued per household. You may have up to two adults and unlimited kids on a single ownership. One person will be the primary Owner. She or he will be the party responsible for the ownership and will receive any repayment from the ownership.
Like any capital investment, the owner investments will be used for the capital needs of the store. Initially, these investments were used to purchase the Basics business, but in the future, these assets likely will be used to make improvements at Basics. If you are an Owner of Basics, you will be able to participate in the decisions of how to use the member investments.
You bet! We hope that everyone will want to become an Owner of the Co-op, but seniors who do not want to become Owners will get Owner pricing (5% off) every day anyway! However, unless they become Owners, seniors will not have any of the the other benefits of ownership, including the right to vote or the rights to get case discounts or make special orders. Whenever Basics is having any other sale, seniors will get only the greatest discount on the sale, while owners will get 5% IN ADDITION to any sale pricing.
*some exclusions may apply.
No! Owners get much better treatment, though, Owning and controlling the store, receiving 5% off every purchase and being able to participate in all that the Basics Cooperative has to offer.
Yes! Basics has become renowned for this special monthly sale and opportunity to meet representatives from the leading supplement manufacturers. We will still have discounts on supplements and health and beauty products.
Absolutely! David became the first Owner of the Co-op and is on the Board of Directors. Here is his letter to the customers of Basics:
You have enjoyed Basics for 27 years. You have watched the business grow and flourish, and I hope you will join me on the next great step for Basics.
I would like to invite you to become an Owner of Basics.
How can you become an Owner of Basics? A cooperative! A cooperative is simply a type of business in which the ownership interests are held by the customers. It operates for the benefit of all of its customers, not necessarily to make a profit. By joining together, you can ensure that Basics continues to be everything you want. Basics will become a sustainable, democratically controlled, economically fair form of business ownership.
This is not a new idea. The natural food industry is full of examples of very successful food cooperatives, all owned and run by their customers. And, importantly to me, its an idea that my dad had before he died. When he knew that I would be responsible for Basics, he asked that I pursue the cooperative future for Basics. It has taken me a bit of time to get myself and Basics ready for the transition, but we are ready now.
I have been honored and privileged to continue my dad’s lifetime of work. With the assistance of the Basics staff, we have made sure that Basics continues its mission of providing quality natural foods and information. As always, your dedication and loyalty to Basics have kept the business going strong. Please accept my invitation to participate in this exciting new future for Basics, and we will work together to make Basics better than ever.
S. David Roang
A cooperative business may be new to many of you. A cooperative is an association of persons united to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned enterprise.
Cooperatives are based on the values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity, and solidarity. In the tradition of their founders, cooperative members believe in the ethical values of honesty, openness, social responsibility, and caring for others.
These cooperative principles are followed by co-ops around the world:
1st Principle: Voluntary and Open Membership, without gender, social, racial, political, or religious discrimination.
2nd Principle: Democratic Member Control—Cooperatives are democratic organizations controlled by their members, who actively participate in setting their policies and making decisions. Elected representatives are accountable to the membership. Each member gets one vote—one member, one vote.
3rd Principle: Member Economic Participation—Members contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their cooperative, which is the common property of the cooperative. Members usually receive limited compensation, if any, on capital subscribed, and surpluses are allocated for the following purposes: developing their cooperative; benefiting members in proportion to their transactions with the cooperative; and supporting other activities approved by the membership.
4th Principle: Autonomy and Independence—Cooperatives are autonomous, self-help organizations controlled by their members and independent of any third parties.
5th Principle: Education, Training and Information, for the members, elected representatives, managers, and employees, not to mention the general public.
6th Principle: Cooperation Among Cooperatives
7th Principle: Concern for Community—Cooperatives work for the sustainable development of their communities through policies approved by their members.
To learn more general information about Basics, we encourage you to contact us.