The Northwest Cooperative Development Center announces The Legacy Project workshops designed to facilitate rural business succession planning and cultivating the next generation of ownership. The workshop will focus on legal, financial, and the process of selling one’s business to the employees.
Rural business owners without a clear exit strategy may benefit by selling to their employees through either a cooperative or an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). These models offer owners a viable exit strategy, offer opportunities for rural workers to retain their jobs, allow for the retention of local ownership, and maintain economic vibrancy and identity for the community. Executive Director Diane Gasaway notes, “Small business advisors are the target audience for their potential to establish a continuing education pathway.”
The three hour workshop will be led by attorneys Jason Weiner and Linda Phillip who have extensive experience in conversions. NWCDC will present the workshop in 11 communities throughout the Pacific Northwest States of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho between the end of April and end of June. The events have a Facebook page @LegacyProjectNWCDC and a web site at www.nwcdc.coop/legacy-project which have the full schedule of events.
The primary focus of the workshop is for business advisors to learn about the option and value of seeing business employees as potential buyers. The workshops are free and open to any interested party including business owners considering retirement. The workshops will be accredited for 3.0 CLE credits.
Funding for this workshop comes from the USDA Rural Development Business Grant. NWCDC has connected with many local Small Business Development Centers in the target communities. Gasaway said “We are excited to partner with local SBDCs throughout the region. With the passage of the Main Street Employee Ownership Act, SBDC’s now have a mandate to assist in conversions to worker owned businesses and we look forward to assisting them in their mission.”
NWCDC, a 501c3 based in Olympia, Washington with the mission to promote community economic development through the cooperative business model. NWCDC provides technical assistance to new and existing cooperatives in the pacific northwest states of Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. NWCDC is an equal opportunity employer and service provider.
For More Information:
Cooperative Development Specialist
Northwest Cooperative Development Center