Cooperative Business Institute




The Cooperative Business Institute (CBI) is a comprehensive training program designed to equip participants with the skills and resources needed to start and manage a worker-owned cooperative.  Trainings, consultations, and workshops in the Cooperative Business Institute cover topics ranging from the history, principles and values of cooperatives to the legal, organizational and business needs specific to worker-owned enterprises.

Whether you are looking to start a worker cooperative or strengthen an existing one, the CBI has something for you.  Choose from one of the following options:

General Assistance

Are you part of an existing worker cooperative looking to strengthen or grow your business? Do you have an idea for a worker cooperative but you’re not sure what to do next? We will work with you to design the right consultation/training package to meet your needs and budget.

CBI Academy

The CBI Academy is designed for teams of entrepreneurs seeking to start a worker-owned cooperative.  Composed of 15 classes, the CBI Academy walks participants through the process of forming a worker cooperative in Texas.  Graduates from our academy walk away with the following:

  • A deeper understanding of the history, principles and values of the cooperative model.
  • Over 50 hours of training and consultation from Cooperation Texas staff and business professionals.
  • A comprehensive resource binder on worker cooperatives.
  • Logo and website design.
  • A graduate certification.
  • Marketing assistance to increase the public profile and visibility of their cooperative.
  • A business plan for their co-op.
  • Concrete skills in democratic governance & management.
  • Concrete skills in meeting facilitation & conflict resolution.
  • A strong understanding of cooperative financing & financial literacy.
  • Legal assistance on forming a worker cooperative in Texas.

To apply, you must have a team of at least three people committed to a single business concept.  The cost per team is $3,500.  We will work with each team to create a payment plan that meets their budget.


CBI Workshops are offered throughout the year on the following topics:

  • Worker Co-op 101
  • Democratic Governance
  • Democratic Management
  • Democratic Decision-Making & Meeting Facilitation
  • Effective Communication & Conflict Resolution
  • Worker Co-op Marketing
  • Worker Co-op Financing
  • Financial Literacy for Worker-Owners
  • Employee vs. Worker-Owner
  • Texas Co-op Law
  • Worker Cooperatives & Sustainability

Workshops are open to the public and are offered by donation. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. Check out our Events Calendar for information on upcoming workshops.