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Other news: Nominations open for Co-operative Excellence

Nominations are now open for the inaugural Co-operative Excellence awards.

Awards in five categories will be made to individuals and co-operative enterprises to recognise excellence within the co-operative movement.

Speaking about the new awards Dame Pauline Green, Chief Executive of Co operativesUK, said: �The co-operative movement in the UK is a dynamic collection of democratically-owned businesses that make a massive contribution to the economy and are involved in many groundbreaking initiatives. The Co-operative Excellence awards are designed to celebrate that innovation and success.�

Categories for 2009 are:

Innovation in Co-operative Business award

o This award gives credit to an individual or enterprise for their creativity and drive for change � especially their innovative stance and approach to business.

Promotion of Co-operative Values and Principles award

o This award identifies an individual or enterprise that has made a significant attempt to further understanding of the co-operative model through the promotion of co-operative values and principles.

Improvement in Commercial Performance award

o This award is presented to an enterprise that has made a clear and sustained effort to improve its commercial performance.

Returning Value to Members award

o This award highlights an enterprise that has shown considerable efforts to acknowledge the importance of its members.

Reporting Standards award

o This award is given to an enterprise that best demonstrates its commitment to the Co-operativesUK guidelines for reporting commercial, co-operative and social performance, corporate governance and accounting standards.

Nominations close on 30 April 2009 and will then be reviewed by an independent judging panel. Winners will be notified of their success by the end of May. The awards will be presented on Saturday 27 June at Co-operatives 2009 in Old Windsor, Berkshire.

To find out more or to submit a nomination go to: www.cooperatives-uk.coop/Co-operativeExcellence.