This story is dropped at you by Project Equity.

Mariposa Gardening & Design Cooperative is an ecological design-build landscaping firm that was based in Berkeley in 2005, and that now works all through the Bay Space. Since 2017, it’s also been an employee-owned cooperative, and, as such, exemplifies how such a mannequin can maintain firms rooted in place, present high quality jobs and strengthen companies for the long-term.

“I knew that I needed Mariposa Gardening & Design to be an organization that promoted financial stability for everybody throughout a time when many on the margins of our society really feel unsure about political and financial change,” mentioned Andrea Hurd, Mariposa Gardening & Design’s founder, lead designer and lead stonemason.

“Throughout the pandemic, it has been wonderful to have a workforce of people who find themselves actively working collectively to maintain our enterprise alive. If the burden was on simply me at this level, we might not have such a big and thriving firm. We’ve pulled collectively in such a unprecedented and supportive solution to maintain our firm going.”

“We’ve pulled collectively in such a unprecedented and supportive solution to maintain our firm going.” — Andrea Hurd

Small companies in Berkeley are going through an unprecedented financial disruption resulting from COVID-19. Many native enterprise homeowners could also be in search of a method out — contemplating placing their enterprise up on the market with no clear consumers or shutting them down for good. Regrettably, most of the companies that may shut are viable firms that will in all probability have recovered post-crisis. They’re merely victims of a worldwide disaster that froze demand and stalled cashflow.

COVID-related challenges are layered on high of an possession succession disaster that was already unfolding, on condition that child boomers (these born between 1946-1964) personal practically half of all companies with workers in Alameda County, in addition to nationwide. Cities and areas want to grasp — and deal with — the danger of the “Silver Tsunami” as these enterprise homeowners retire. The chance is that these companies is not going to be retained domestically — both as a result of they quietly shut down, are offered to out-of-area consumers or just shouldn’t have a succession plan because the proprietor transitions into retirement.

For significant motion to assist strengthen Berkeley’s small companies throughout and past COVID, worker possession needs to be lifted up inside our financial response.

Berkeley partnering with Challenge Fairness to assist enterprise homeowners

Happily, the town of Berkeley is taking a proactive method to help domestically owned companies which are in danger by partnering with Project Equity, an East Bay nonprofit centered on serving to enterprise homeowners keep domestically owned and protect their legacy by worker possession succession. Berkeley is already the house of many profitable employee-owned companies and California has, by far, the best variety of employee-owned companies of any state within the U.S.

For companies trying to enhance worker engagement, or to create a succession plan, worker possession generally is a highly effective software. In line with the Nationwide Heart of Worker Possession, employee-owned companies have workers that make 53% increased incomes than these working in conventional companies.

Challenge Fairness carried out an analysis in Berkeley to quantify the variety of privately held firms with workers which are aged 20 or older — a very good indication that they want succession planning — and the impression if these companies should not retained.
Corporations which are 20 years outdated and over within the metropolis of Berkeley:

  • Signify 1,200 of the town’s companies
  • Make use of an estimated 13,000 people
  • Generate over $1.6B in income

Small, domestically owned companies are important to Berkeley’s native economic system and group vitality. Worker possession could also be unfamiliar to many, however it motivates and engages workers, supplies good jobs and a sustainable enterprise mannequin and retains native companies native. It additionally presents an interesting reply to the retiring enterprise proprietor who’s questioning concerning the future: there’s a purchaser proper there beneath my nostril and it’s the very workers who helped me construct the corporate.

This story is written and paid for by Project Equity, an East Bay nonprofit centered on serving to enterprise homeowners keep domestically owned and protect their legacy by worker possession succession.





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