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Main Market Cooperative

Membership Enrollment Information

1. One voting share, which is the minimum required equity for membership, is $180. This share may be paid for in full upon signing up as a member OR paid in $10 yearly increments through our register system. If paying through yearly increments, you will be prompted yearly upon your sign up date to pay $10 in equity until you’ve paid off your $180 share.

2. Your voting share is your stock in the cooperative. It’s your ownership in the business. There are ways to own more of the business (namely through preferred shares) but in order to keep our ownership truly democratic, any member can buy only 1 share of voting stock in the co-op. One member=One vote.

3. The voting share may only be in one person’s name (the name of the person signing the membership sign up form). Anyone in your household may use your membership (discounts, bulk ordering, etc.) on a regular basis with your permission. Legally, however, and for voting or board eligibility, the membership must be in one individual’s name. That individual is the only person from the household that can vote, run for the board, receive a dividend check, or request an equity refund. Multiple members in a household may sign up for multiple memberships if desired. Memberships are not transferrable.

4. Your equity (whether voting shares or preferred) helps grow the co-op through

community-sourced capital rather than through banks or stock markets. The important idea behind cooperative member-ownership is that you invest in the co-op with equity AND through shopping here. In profitable years we pay back a portion of your equity investment through dividends. Dividends may eventually exceed your equity investment and are based on a percentage of your annual shopping. In non-profitable years or at the discretion of the Board of Directors dividends may not be issued. In profitable years when the Board of Directors withholds dividend payments for the capital needs of the cooperative, those funds are kept on record as “retained patronage dividends” to be paid back to members at a later date to be determined by the Board.

5. It is important to realize that your investment in the co-op is an at-risk investment. Main Market Cooperative is a relatively new (2010) business and the Board of Directors oversees the allocation of dividends annually. While equity is refundable, we reserve the right to prolong repayment if the refund is deemed to be adverse to the financial well- being of the co-op. The idea behind cooperatives, however, is that the risk of owning a small business is spread through the ownership and equity of many members working together to provide a business solution for their community – and of course that the business is used and loved in perpetuity by its members.

6. There is a number of important information about how Main Market Co-op operates

available on our website at You may find contact information

there in addition to our Bylaws, Articles of Incorporation, and our Policy Governance


7. The Board of Directors holds important meetings monthly on the third Thursday of every month at 5pm at the co-op (with the exception of August and December) that are open to the membership. Please RSVP prior to the meeting if you’re interested in attending to [email protected].

8. Our primary vehicle of communication with owners is through our email blasts and newsletters. We endeavor to use email respectfully and comply fully with all unsubscribe laws. Please ensure to keep your email up to date so you receive important notices pertaining to membership. Please also ensure that your phone number and address remain current in our database as well.