Charles Cowling
  “Every private equity company in the country has been in touch to try and buy its funerals operation.” Lord Myners   In recent times the Co-op’s reputation has been kept afloat by sentiment fostered by its of-the-people-for-the-people origins, fortified by ‘ethical values’ and holier-than-thou policies on fair trade. Fondness
Charles Cowling
  To Nick Goodway in the London Evening Standard it looks more like a ‘massive public relations exercise than a genuine “want to know what you think”.’  He’s talking about the Co-op’s Have Your Say survey, now under way, which gives you the chance to tell ‘the Group’ what you think
Charles Cowling
The Co-operative — What Makes Us Different   “I sometimes wonder if the greatest institutional problem of our time is not plain, unvarnished evil, but this obsession with Ethics as an outward form, with compliance rather than conscience. The whole idea of an Ethical business, as distinct from a normal
Charles Cowling
  “One version of the “better” that mutuals have to be is that they have to be seen by customers to be more “decent” than other businesses – because that provides a motive for some consumers to spend their money with them. And the second version of the better is
Charles Cowling
Tom Quixote from Matthew Hayes on Vimeo.     Family funeral director Tom Crean has spent the last 30 years tilting at windmills. Tom Quixote tells the story of his struggle against the corporate takeover of the North American funeral industry, during which he has had a run-in with Hollywood,
Charles Cowling
  On 2 July this year the Co-operative Group’s executive team visited Rochdale. The chief exec, Euan Sutherland, tweeted: “Spent the day at Rochdale Pioneers Museum with the Exec immersing ourselves in Co-operative heritage. Fantastic, inspirational, relevant”. All very heartening if you’re one of those who inclines to the view that
Charles Cowling
  How good to see three local family undertakers in Devon club together to advertise themselves. Really nice, professional piece of work — proper job as they say down there. (Click it to make it bigger.)  (First one of you wins a cigar)
Charles Cowling
  From Sky News:  The Co-operative Group has rebuffed a string of takeover approaches for its funerals arm amid a controversial restructuring of its troubled banking division. Sky News has learnt that buyout firms including CVC Capital Partners, the controlling shareholder of Formula One motor racing, and Montagu Private Equity,
Charles Cowling
  You may remember the case of Lisa Mullan, whose father chose to be buried at Crossways woodland burial site but, because of an administrative muddle, ended up being buried somewhere else.  We’ve just heard some good news from Lisa. Co-operative Funeralcare sector manager Jack Walsh subsequently invited Lisa’s mother to
Charles Cowling
I first heard from Lisa Mullan when she wrote to me on 23 Feb 2013:  My father was told he had terminal lung cancer in May 2012 and had around 6 months to live. He subsequently purchased a Funeral Care Plan from the Cooperative Funeral Care, Plympton, Devon and requested