Difference Between Corporation and Cooperatives (With Table)

In today’s world, there is a lot of developments. Businesses are taking fold day by day, and their working forms are also changing. They can take many forms. Cooperatives and Corporations are that two examples. 

They are used often to denote the same thing, but their working ways are too different from each other.

Corporation vs Cooperatives

The difference between corporations and co-operative is that they are entities but have different goals. Corporations are separate large-scale entities, which are owned by the shareholder or group of people and targets for profit only. Cooperatives are made by a group of people for having nonprofit interests and for their mutual benefit.

Owned by shareholders and a group of people, corporations are large entities that are legal and separate, having the target of producing goods and services in the market. They have different positions for the people who have certain responsibilities, and they take care of them. They can be profit or non-profit corporations.

Cooperative is a type of small entity which can be called autonomous societies, and they are formed for mutual and cultural interests. They are commonly benefited, and each member is responsible for their duties. Every member is an owner, and every customer of that cooperative is a member. And thus, every decision is taken democratically.

Comparison Table Between Corporation and Cooperatives

Parameters of ComparisonCorporationCooperatives
DefinitionA separate entity having the intent of making money and profit owned by a group of people or stakeholders.An association is made voluntarily by people for their mutual benefit and every customer is known as the member.
EstablishmentIt is established under operational state laws with Articles of Incorporation.It should be registered and established by a group of people having common needs and aspirations.
ManagementThey are run by the board of directors.They are run by the officials who get elected democratically.
OwnershipThey are formed from stakeholders.They are formed with customers, employees or residents, etc.
DissolutionFor the dissolution, they need a government of stakeholders’ permission.For their dissolution, they need all members voting and equal voting.

What is Corporation?

Catering to both national and international markets, Corporation is owned by stakeholders and is a legal entity. They are run by many key players who have different responsibilities. There are shareholders, owners, directors who play an important role in managing the corporation. General, close, S type and LLC are the types of corporation. The purpose of the Corporation is to provide goods and services and make them available to the market.

In case of any type of fault, the stakeholders are not held responsible. They usually make money the selling financial instruments such as bonds or stocks. They are less flexible and mostly structured. There is usually ease in transferring the ownership of a part of a corporation. They are of both type profit and nonprofit, but they usually have intentions to have profits. They are built up of legal rights and responsibilities. Some benefits are enjoyed by the stakeholders in the corporation. They don’t have to pay back the debts of the company and need not worry about it.

What are Cooperatives?

Meeting the common need and aspirations of the members, Cooperatives are small-scale, non-profit entities. This is done voluntarily for cultural, social, mutual benefits and for the benefit of those who are utilizing the services of the cooperatives. The owners of the cooperatives are not others but the members who are part of the cooperative. Through co-operation, the whole organization works, keeping their principles and acting together.

The duties, the responsibilities, and the profits are all shared among the members. By doing one vote per member, which is done democratically, all the decisions are taken. By doing the popular vote, the Treasurer, Chairman, or Secretary can be elected. There are many types of Cooperatives, and some of them are Volunteer cooperative, Social, Utility, Housing, Agricultural, Retailer, etc. The member of the cooperatives invest their money, and thus they raise money. For dissolution of the Cooperative, every member’s approval is necessary by equal voting.

Main Differences Between Corporation and Cooperatives

  1. A corporation is a large-scale entity that can be small, medium, and large and deals with both national and international markets, whereas Cooperative targets its members of certain interests and is a small scale entity.
  2. A corporation is usually purposed for the production of goods and services to the market, whereas Cooperatives is targeted for the needs and services of its members.
  3. The key players in the corporation are the shareholders, the directors and officers, and the workers, whereas, in cooperatives, the four roles stated in the corporation si also done by cooperative members.
  4. A cooperative is usually a non -profit entity, whereas Corporation can also be both non-profit or profit.
  5. Corporations are run by the board of directors, whereas Cooperations are run by elected officials or democratic members.
  6. The corporation raises its money from financial investments like bonds and stocks whereas, In cooperation, the money is raised by its member’s investments only.
  7. For the dissolution of the Corporation, the approval of Stockholder and the government. Whereas In cooperation, the dissolution is done by the approval of members by equal voting.


Cooperative and Corporation both are very different, but still, they have many similarities between them, such as they both have limited liability which means no one from the members of the cooperations or corporation is responsible o paying the debts of the company. One of the notable differences which might be seen in Cooperative and corporation is how they are taxed. 

Today in modern times, cooperatives are working like corporations and have begun to look like it. They have a very different way of working, but the corporations always impress the cooperatives by putting their efficiency and generating the desired profits.


  1. https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/ebr.1998.05498aab.007/full/html?journalCode=ebr
  2. https://heinonline.org/hol-cgi-bin/get_pdf.cgi?handle=hein.journals/hilj56&section=10
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