Five years after its creation and for the first time after the COVID-19 pandemic, the members of International Cooperative Entrepreneurship Think Tank (ICETT) met physically to discuss the strategic lines and next steps. The 11th ICETT Plenary Meeting was hosted by ICETT member Mondragon Corporation in the Basque Country from 1 to 3 February.
During these three days, ICETT members had the opportunity to exchange with cooperatives and government representatives of the Basque Country such as Mondragon’s Congress President Leire Mugerza, Mondragon Mayor Maria Ubarretxena, San Sebastian Mayor Eneko Goia, President of the Basque Cooperative High Council and Vice President of Konfekoop Patxi Olabarria, and his team. The members also had a chance to visit COPRECI, an industrial cooperative that is a member of Mondragon Group with more than 50 years' experience in the components sector, developing and equipping household appliances.
Members from Mondragon Corporation (Spain), Rabobank (Netherlands), S Group (Finland), NACF (South Korea), Kibbutz (Israel), Smart Cooperative (Belgium) and Euricse (Italy) participated in this event. Other ICETT members include Buldana Urban Cooperative Credit Society (India), CCA Global Partners, National Co+op Grocers (USA), Banco Credicoop, Cooperativa Obrera, Cooperativa de Portuarios del Puerto de San Martín, Sancor Seguros (Argentina), IFFCO (India), Midcounties (UK), Up Group (France), Vancity (Canada) and CIC Group (Kenya).
Bruno Roelants, ICA Director General, welcomed the forward-thinking ideas exchanged during the meeting. ICETT members are well positioned to take cooperatives forward and build up new strategies to foster the role of the cooperative movement as a key global actor to advance social, economic and environmental development.
Hans Groeneveld, ICETT Chairperson and Director of International Cooperative Affairs at Rabobank Netherlands, assured that ICETT will continue pursuing its objective of serving as a strategic hub that would provide valuable information and experiences to strengthen cooperatives’ competitive advantage, positioning the cooperative movement as a key driver for sustainable development.
The Basque cooperative movement awarded Bruno Roelants with the makila, a traditional Basque walking stick that represents authority and strength, for his service to the cooperative movement.
The magazine of the Mondragon Corporation published an article dedicated to the visit with interviews to some ICETT members (find it here)
See pictures of the meeting here.
The ICETT was formed in 2018 by the ICA to boost cooperatives' entrepreneurial performance. Through innovative ideas, research, education, and cooperation, its members address the global challenges that cooperative enterprises are facing today.
Visit the ICETT web page here.