Join the Meteor Co-operative today! Be part of the change, help to build an innovative, community-driven, sustainable and collaborative model for the future. You decide how you want to be involved, there is a place for everyone.
Join The Meteor Co-operative Today Here – Just continue
The pledge period was launched at the March 24th community meeting and it will continue until April 15th. The are 3 ways people can get involved in the co-operative. Each individual can decide how and how much to be involved.
- Join the Meteor co-operative – most important
- Get involved in a working group
- Invest in the Meteor co-operative
The Co-operative Needs You To Meet Its Objectives
A – Number of co-operative members
Before April 15th, the Meteor Co-operative needs to have 250 members. The objective is to have 1000 members by the end of the year.
98 ARE ALREADY MEMBERS, PLEASE JOIN AND ADD YOUR NAME
Join the co-operative for a $25 lifetime membership (one time)
- A co-operative is all about its members. A co-operative without members does not exist. Join the co-op, support the development of your community
- Be part of our community’s economic, social and cultural development
- Become an ambassador and help the co-operative become sustainable
- Gain advantages from the Meteor patronage program
1 – Drop by the METEOR in Haileybury to sign the membership adhesion form and pay your $25 lifetime membership fee.
2 – Follow the link right here to register your membership and pay the $25 one time lifetime membership fee on-line
B – Number Of Members Involved In Working Groups
Before April 15th, the Meteor Co-op needs to have 100 people interested in helping out in one of the volunteer working groups. The objective is to have 150 people interested to help out by the end of the year.
48 ARE ALREADY INVOLVED, PLEASE BRING ALONG YOUR PASSION AND TALENT AND JOIN A GROUP
- Get involve with one of the working groups for a few hours a month
- Bring your ideas, share your passions & knowledge
- Together we can build a dynamic co-operative
- There is a place for everyone
1 – Drop by the METEOR in Haileybury to find out about the multitude of working groups and see where you think you could help out. You can also just contact us via email or telephone.
2 – Follow the link right here to indicate your interest in one of the working groups. As the group is setup we will get in touch with you. Please note that you will be required to become a member to be part of a working group.
C – Financing the Meteor Co-operative
Before April 15th, the Meteor Co-op is hoping to have met the objective of its 1st round of financing which will enable to finance the start up and the purchasing of the business (not the building). By the end of the year, the coop is hoping to have met the objective of its 2nd round of financing for the purchase of the building and property.
$54,000 HAS ALREADY BEEN PLEDGED, PLEASE JOIN TO REACH THE 1ST ROUND OF FINANCING OBJECTIVE
Invest in the Co-operative
- Purchase preferred shares in the co-operative, invest in your community. The shares are qualified investments for RRSP, TFSA or RESP.
- 1stround of financing has for objective to sell 700 shares at $250/share for a total of $175,000. The 1st round of financing will enable to provide the required start-up funds and to purchase the business (not the building and property).
- Purchase any numbers of shares. You can invest $250, $500, $1000, $5000, $10,000. You choose how much you want to invest!
- The more community investment will mean a much faster sustainable co-operative.
- As the co-operative becomes profitable, you earn dividends on your investment
- Investing in the Meteor co-operative is also about creating 25 direct local jobs in our community.It is about adding value to our community. It is about being proud of our community.
1 – Drop by the METEOR in Haileybury to pick up our financial package. You can also sign the pledge form if you are interested to invest in the co-op. Contact us via email or telephone to discuss.
2 – Follow the link right here to learn more about investing in the coop and to complete the pledge form if you are interest to invest in the co-op
A Successful Community Meeting
Over 150 people participated to the community meeting held on March 24, 2019. People were there to learn about the idea, to learn about cooperatives and also to see how they could be part of this exiting new project for our community. Success stories from elsewhere were also shared. Financial scenarios were played out showing the positive effect the community could have financially on the success of the cooperative. People participated in a very successful brain storming session for the working groups – great ideas were introduced and an important amount of names were gathered of interested people who want to join and help out. Over 100 people provided with their pledges either to join the co-op, collaborate with a working group or to invest in the co-operative. The great success of this community meeting was necessary to continue the transition process. The community is clearly behind the initiative!
Why Start A Co-operative Project
A co-operative business, also known as a co-op, is a type of organization that is both owned and controlled by its members, who also happen to use the services and products of the co-operative. These businesses are different from other types of companies because they are formed and operate for the benefit of their members and the community.
The next generation of leaders, comprising many “millennials,” will be more adept at working in a changing, global, and networked environment. They will do it with a greater emphasis on teamwork, facility for the use of technology, and sensitivity to needs for work/life balance. An alternative business model will be required to attract the millennials back, a better way to do business will have to be brought upon! Businesses should move towards enhanced democracy and collaboration. The co-operative model needs to be at the heart of our new economy.
What if we were able to build the foundations of a co-operative world in our community? A place where people would be happy to help out, a place where people would be at ease to come and go, a place that would attract youth and newcomers, a place that could inspire other communities… What would it look like ? It might look like the METEOR Co-operative.
The Cafe Meteor Bistro is the first project of the METEOR co-operative. Overtime it will expand. It will invest in other community businesses and projects. We hope it will become the next Mondragon Corporation. Founded as a cooperative in 1956 in the town of Mondragon (Spain) by graduated of a local college, it now employs almost 100,000 people in 257 cooperative companies.
Do we continue the way it is going now or do we each get involve and help out to build something unique in our community and in Northern Ontario?
More about Cafe Meteor Bistro and the Structure of the Restaurant Co-operative Project
The Café Meteor Bistro is a 46-seat restaurant and social hub in the rural Northeastern Ontario community of Haileybury, offering fresh, local food for its scratch kitchen, a small farmers’ market in the summer months, year-round live professional performances by regional artists, and historical and cultural knowledge sharing activities. For the last 12 months, the Meteor generated revenue of $650,000 and created 15 direct local jobs. On a longer-term vision, the Meteor has the potential to be a $1M/year profitable business and also to be playing a key social, economic and environmental roles in the community.
A team led by employees and members of the community is hoping to get the required community support to ensure the continuation of the Meteor under a new business model, a community co-operative model. The transition to a co-operative model is natural and is a continuation of what has been started at the Meteor.
The restaurant industry is evolving and restaurants must develop a modern approach with customers and communities as their focus. The Meteor is clearly on the right path with a proactive modern approach and the proposed restaurant co-operative model even pushes the limits further. Under the cooperative model ownership, the Meteor co-op will be even more community oriented, members will be part of the experience and will be involved in creating the experience.
The Co-operative will be composed of community and employee members. A volunteer Board of Directors will be in place, as well as a set of Community Support Working Groups. The employee members of the co-operative will carry out the restaurant operations. Current owners will remain involved during the transition period.
The volunteer working groups are key to the success of the co-op. These groups are aimed at connecting the passion and talent of community members to the Meteor. There is a place for everyone!
Typical involvement of the various volunteer working groups
- Develop policies & procedures
- Create a hiring template
- Assist in the yearly employee evaluation
- Review the effectiveness of the working group structure
- Develop financial templates for budgets and operations
- Develop processes for the bookkeeping/accounting
- Develop realistic benchmarks & establish a review process
- Regularly review financial situation
- Develop process to effectively raise capital through shares
- Website and social media
- Media relations
- Develop effective strategies
- Connect with the members and the community
Local Products: Growing & Foraging
- Develop partnerships for growing space and foraging
- Recruit volunteers for growing and foraging
- Develop a marketing strategy and track results
Menu Development & Invited Chef Program
- Assist the team with the development of menues
- Take part of the invited chef program
- Assist in developing thematic events based on the food experience
Host & Ambassador Program
- Become a host during busy times at the restaurant. great clients, explain the Meteor story, support the front-end staff, get the clients’s feedback as they leave
- Become an ambassador to represent the co-operative at festivals and events outside the restaurant such as the North on Tap beer festival or Village Noel Temiskaming
- help to set up guidelines and requirements for the host and ambassador program
Building & Maintenance
- Develop procedures for proper maintenance of equipment
- Assist in maintenance tasks
- Assist in beautification and decorations
- Develop standards for cleaning
- Assist in cleaning tasks
A Look At The Financials
In 2018, the Cafe Meteor Bistro generated revenues of $650,000. A restaurant usually takes 4-5 years to develop a regular client base and ensure profitability. For the Meteor, this will be attained during 2019 so basically 2 years after opening. Customer base keeps increasing and feedback associated with the restaurant is very positive.
The financial plan provides forecasts regarding the first 3 years of operation under the co-operative ownership. The growth of the volume of sales would bring sales from the current $650,000 to a value of $1M in 3 years with constant reduction of costs and improvement of the bottom line. The increase in sales is based on the natural growth of the restaurant and the impact of developing new initiatives such as afternoon activities, thematic evenings and the Meteor at home program.
Setting benchmarks is critical to ensure a profitable operation. Restaurants have a typical benchmark formula composed of food & beverage costs, labour costs, other expenses and surplus. When looking at the current situation after almost 2 years of operation, the food & beverage costs as well as the other expenses are close to the objectives. Benchmarks for a scratch kitchen and local food restaurant like the Meteor will be slightly different from chain type establishments with slightly higher labour costs. Attention will have to be brought to labour cost to further reduce from the current 40% to the 35% benchmark level. The initial years of a restaurant is always a challenge in terms of labour costs as a period of time is needed before a stable team is in place. Intensive training is involved and additional labour is required as the menues are developed and tested. The employees have identified areas where labour costs could be reduced and have taken initiatives to reduce costs.
The financing scenario impacts the level of surplus of the cooperative. The more community investment will mean a much faster sustainable cooperative. Community investment represents a less expensive mean of financing the co-operative than more traditional sources of financing.
If both round of financing are successful, which would mean a 100% owned co-operative (including the business, all equipment, the building and the property), after 3 years it is projected that the co-op will have generated $200,000 of dividends and surplus.
The 1st round of financing for a value of $175,000 (700 preferred shares at $250/share) would finance the required start-up and the purchase of the business.
The 2nd round of financing for a value of $275,000 (1100 shares at $250/share) would finance the purchase of the property, building and larger attached equipment. The 2nd round of financing will require approval of the offering statement from the security commission as the amount collected is above $200,000.
The preferred shares are qualified investments for RRSP, TFSA or RESP. Dividends would be paid out every year once the co-operative is profitable. The more preferred shares sold, the faster the co-op is profitable and the more dividends will be paid out. The preferred shares may also be bought back after 5 years of ownership based on availability of funds.
The complete business plan is available for individuals who required additional information prior to investing in the cooperative. Please contact us to get a copy email@example.com
Together Lets continue The Meteor Adventure
485 Ferguson Avenue, Haileybury ON
Link to a previous post about the transition.