A £750,000 loan fund for social enterprises and co-operatives was launched last week.
Chief executive of the Co-operative Group Martin Beaumont kicked-off the Co-operative Action Loan Fund, managed by Industrial Common Ownership Finance.
"Co-operative Action was developed to invest in social and co-operative enterprise,
he said. "It is a further example of the movement's concern about the problems facing communities in which we trade, and a demonstration that our goals are a key part of who we are and what we do."
Co-operative Action, a foundation, was launched in April to support new forms of co-operative and mutual enterprise.
It is funded by profits from Co-operative Societies, but plans to become self-financing. It has already made loans to organisations including Co-operative Solutions to Public Services Provision and Proud City Co-operative.