The Open Credit Network was born out of discussions at OPEN 2018, and has already been an educational journey about collaboration.
It’s not easy designing a cooperative organisation, especially when its ultimate objective is to change the way that we think about, and exchange value, on a global scale!
But, after months of tinkering, community building, research, debate and discussion we now have a working prototype to test and build a cooperatively owned and governed mutual credit system.
That might not sound revolutionary, but think about the key words in the sentence above, “cooperatively owned”.
As far as we are aware, there is no other cooperatively owned, business to business mutual credit system in the UK, so we think we’re doing something quite unique.
The fact that we are a cooperative means that our primary purpose is to serve our members, the businesses which trade in the network. Other networks might claim they have similar purposes, but as private owned companies, and sometime venture capital backed businesses, these organisations will never be able to compete with what we are building. They will always be conflicted by the desire to make a profit, which can only ever extract value from the members of network.
The Open Credit Network is a non-profit organisation, and has so far been built on pure sweat equity. It’s free to join and free to trade and provides business with access to interest free credit, as a means to conduct business without the need for conventional, fiat money.
In future phases of the network we will be required to charge membership, and/or possibly trading fees, to cover the costs of managing the network and to help it grow to become a vibrant and resilient economy. But we will never extract value from the network to pay shareholders or venture capitalists.
The plan for the start up phase is to start small, working with pre-selected businesses that have expressed interest, in order to conduct some initial trading loops and to learn, improve, and update our systems and iterate until we’re ready to move on to the next phase.
We’ll be publishing lots more detail about our thinking, our plans and our progress as things progress. We intend to work in public as much as possible and to remain as open and inclusive as our name suggests and our mission requires.
For now, we’re super excited to welcome you to the Open Credit Network and if you would like to get your business involved, we invite yo to read our Membership Agreement and express interest via our form and we will let you know when we’ve found some new customers for you to trade with.
Here’s to the economic revolution.