• Sun. Nov 28th, 2021

Workers buyout, to date 326 ‘saved’ companies with over 10,500 workers


Oct 27, 2021

Up to now, 326 companies have been saved from bankruptcy and risen from the ashes, for a total of over 10,500 employees who have rolled up their sleeves and have not lost their jobs. These are the numbers of cooperatives constituted by the so-called “workers buyout”, a term borrowed from the English that indicates those cooperatives born on the initiative of workers who take over a company or part of it, which take over the property to maintain productive activity and occupation. It is almost always the rescue of companies in crisis but also of family-run companies, which perhaps due to a lack of generational change, are forced to close: so much so that last year a specific budget was provided for this type of interventions and a fund of 15 million which will be added to the other resources already foreseen. A phenomenon that of workers buyout which in Italy encompasses various sectors, from agriculture to industry, from social services to construction. But in addition to the strength of mind of those who improvise as an employee entrepreneur who was, in order not to lose everything and bet on their future, transforming their severance pay (tax-free) or unemployment benefits (Naspi) into capital, to support this small and medium-sized businesses contribute to the financing of Cooperation Finanza Impresa (CFI) participated and supervised by the Ministry of Economic Development which, to date, has invested a total of over 300 million euros in ‘workers buyout’ coop, since it was founded in 1986 with the entry into force of the Marcora law. Cooperation Finanza Impresa becomes obligatorily a member of the cooperative, puts up capital, provides loans at a subsidized rate or market rate and, after ten years, has to leave. In addition to the Ministry of Economic Development, Invitalia, the mutual funds of Agci, Confcooperative, Legacoop and 325 cooperative enterprises are present in the capital of Cooperation Finanza Impresa. For each worker of these cooperatives an average investment per employee of 12 thousand euros is estimated, the government intends to strengthen this tool also for the part concerning tutoring because they are complex projects that require accompaniment. Among the active cooperatives, 75% are members of Legacoop and produce 87% of the turnover and 91% of the profits of the total. Associated enterprises have a much higher survival rate (47.2%) than that found among non-members (20.4%). There is a strong territorial concentration between the central and north-eastern regions (70%); most of the recovered companies (79.6%) are part of the manufacturing industry and the average size makes workers buyout mainly in SMEs.