Electric cooperatives don’t just provide power. They have power.
National Cooperative Bank’s 2017 Co-op 100 List is out, and electric co-ops account for one-fifth of the entries.
According to NCB, the 20 electric co-ops spotlighted had $19.1 billion in revenues last year. That’s about 9 percent of the nearly $208 billion in overall revenues among the top 100 co-ops. Energy and communications remains the third largest sector on the list, which is topped by agriculture with $116 billion in revenues and grocery co-ops with $33.6 billion in revenues.
“The economic impact of cooperatives is critical to our economy,” said Charles E. Snyder, president and CEO of National Cooperative Bank, which released the report to coincide with October’s annual Co-op Month. Co-ops, he noted, “can be seen in just about every industry across America.”
Among the electric co-ops making the grade are Tri-State G&T at No. 32, up four spots from a year ago, with revenues of $1.35 billion in 2016.
“Being part of the Co-op 100 is a marker of our association’s strength,” said Mike McInnes, CEO of Tri-State. “Our success is drawn from 43 members working together, listening to one another and shepherding the resources to power the potential of over a million people across the West.”
Great River Energy landed in the middle of the 2017 list, moving up nine positions to No. 50. The Maple Grove, Minnesota-based G&T had 2016 revenues of $1.02 billion.
“Our member cooperatives are a big part of what makes Minnesota great,” said Larry Schmid, Great River Energy vice president and chief financial officer. “We are proud to help provide reliable, affordable electric service.”
The highest-ranking electric co-op on the NCB list is, once again, Basin Electric Power Cooperative in Bismarck, North Dakota. It landed in the No. 18 spot, up one from a year earlier, with $2.05 billion in revenues last year.
The No. 1 co-op on the list remains CHS Inc., of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, a global agribusiness firm that supplies everything from animal feed to risk management services. Its 2016 revenues were more than $30 billion.
Michael W. Kahn is a staff writer at NRECA.