Program Areas

Since 1977, The ICA Group has applied expert analysis, results-based planning and a collaborative management approach to helping start and grow worker cooperatives, democratic ESOPs and other social purpose ventures. We believe that all people should enjoy economic self-determination as a means to foster an environment where workers’ livelihoods and the communities where they live are stable and secure. We strive to facilitate such a society by acting as a catalyst for groups working to ensure workers have a meaningful say in their own economic future and through the development of firms that put these ideals into practice. To achieve our mission ICA has three direct service program areas:

  • Job Stabilization & Asset Building

     Workers often lose out when a business owner retires or when outside capital buys out a firm facing market challenges. ICA works with business owners of all types to preserve and improve the quality of jobs through converting their firm to a worker cooperative, a social enterprise cooperative, or a democratic ESOP. Using industry specific tools, we provide ongoing support for business expansion through building peer networks that can facilitate peer learning and group purchasing.

  • New Ownership Opportunites

    Democratic ownership can transform industries and demonstrate to the broader business community models that combine high road business practices with solid financial results. Through this program ICA helps start new democratically owned and run firms, and social enterprises focused on providing job access to the hard to employ. In key targeted industry sectors, we work with community partners to develop firms that operate at a scale and scope that creates real economic change for a significant number of workers and demonstrates to the market at large how this approach can be replicated.

  • Business Tools & Support

    An important part of ICA’s work involves supporting worker-owners and social entrepreneurs with timely and practical business tools that are generally applicable to many enterprises. Through our expanding resource library, in person education for Boards on financial matters, and helping firms develop a comprehensive business strategy, we enable firms to reach their true potential. The ICA Group approach involves the integration of legal elements, governance considerations, financial systems and capital structure in a single approach that is tailored to issues specific to worker ownership and social enterprise.