Redefining cooperatives: 1CISP ventures into retail

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DAVAO CITY — The 44-year old 1 Cooperative Insurance System of the Philippines (1CISP) is diversifying into retail operations through a partnership with Davao-based New City Commercial Center (NCCC) Group of Companies.

1CISP President Roy S. Miclat said the partnership involves the setting up of 1KoopMart shops, which will serve as pick-up points for items that are ordered from the NCCC online sales catalog.

The cooperative network, which has over 2,000 members, will also provide an option for delivery through its pool of motorcycle-riding collectors.

Mr. Miclat said 1KoopMart will also provide member cooperatives with a regular outlet for their products.

“As you know, cooperative businesses are highly diverse — from food products to financial services, like insurance and even banking. So, theoretically, anything that can be produced or offered by the co-ops can be made available in 1KoopMart,” Mr. Miclat said in an interview.

The first 1KoopMart will be in Davao City and Mr. Miclat said they are still working on plans for other locations as well as other possible business partners.

“We are still firming up plans with regard to store locations and right now, it’s just NCCC and they are definitely more than enough to help 1KoopMart achieve its objectives,” he said.

Aside from the 1KoopMart, 1CISP also recently launched Coop Kicks, a pitch fest for young entrepreneurs, and the 1Koop Leaders Academy, a nationwide training program for young cooperative professionals.

Winners of the Coop Kicks will be coached and trained by the Ateneo Techno Hub and co-supervised by Model Cooperative Network.

“We also want to make cooperatives more palatable to the youth, so they’d realize that careers in cooperatives are in every way as rewarding as any career in private or public organizations,” Mr. Miclat said.

The 1Koop Leaders Academy, on the other hand, is in partnership with Asia Select, Inc., one of the country’s leading human resource companies.

Mr. Miclat said all these new ventures are aimed at redefining the role of cooperatives in the economy.

“We wanted projects that would elevate cooperatives, both in how we do business as community-based endeavors and in how we are seen by the general public,” he said. — Maya M. Padillo