Co-operative enterprises
build a better world

Facts and figures

One in every six people are cooperators of any of the 3 million cooperatives on earth. Cooperatives provide jobs or work opportunities to 10% of the employed population, and generate 2.1 trillion USD in turnover while providing the services and infrastructure society needs to thrive (TOP 300).

Cooperatives are enterprises based on ethics, values and principles that put the needs and aspirations of their members above the simple goal of maximising profit.

Through self-help and empowerment, reinvesting in their communities and concern for the well-being of people and the world in which we live, cooperatives nurture a long-term vision for sustainable economic growth, social development and environmental responsibility.

Co-operation is not a marginal phenomenon. More than 1,2 billion cooperative members, one in every six people on the planet, are part of any of the 3 million cooperatives in the world! They are strong and healthy: the Top 300 cooperatives and mutuals report a total turnover of 2,1 trillion USD, according to the World Co-operative Monitor (2017).

As member-owned, member-run and member-serving businesses, cooperatives empower people to collectively realise their economic aspirations, while strengthening their social and human capital and developing their communities.

Cooperatives contribute to sustainable economic growth and stable, quality employment, employing 280 million people across the globe, in other words 10% of the world’s employed population.

Cooperatives are currently in the second phase of implementing the Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade, a global strategy for the cooperative business model to be by 2020 the acknowledged leader in economic, social and environmental sustainability, the model preferred by people and the fastest growing form of enterprise.

The International Co-operative Alliance is one of the largest non-governmental organisations in the world today by the number of people it represents, according to available figures. We directly represents 700 million individuals through its approximately 317 members from 110 countries. 


Share your statistics!

Please send any statistics you have on your cooperative organisation, members and the movement of your country to Mr Hyungsik Eum, Strategy and Statistics Coordinator,


A strong and healthy movement

The International Cooperative Alliance, with the scientific and technical support of the European Research Institute on Cooperative and Social Enterprises (Euricse) – publishes an annual report on the co-operative economy : The World Cooperative Monitor.

You can find, download the World Cooperative Monitor and add your cooperative date for the next edition at

Cooperatives create and maintain employment

Presented for the first time at the 2014 Summit of Cooperatives, the study “Cooperatives and Employment: a global report” carried out by CICOPA, the International Cooperative Alliance's sector for industrial and service cooperatives, discusses the significance of cooperative employment globally, both quantitatively and qualitatively. Its second edition published in September 2017 and based on data from 156 countries, shows how cooperatives contribute to resilient employment, a sustainable economy and the well-being of people at work.

Database of Cooperative Statistics

There is no global-level comprehensive database of cooperative statistics because statistical offices analyse cooperatives differently from country to country. Therefore, it is difficult to get a complete picture. There are some key reports and tools that provide some global data on cooperatives: 

Should you require data for a particular sector or country, just let us know, and we might be able to direct you to the data or contact points.