Main Menu

Everyone Welcome - Open 7:30am - 9:30pm daily

Owner Bond Drive

What is an Owner Bond?

Owners may buy Bonds for $500 each and Willy Street Co-op will issue an IOU (a.k.a. Owner Bond) that will pay a stated rate of interest and promises to pay the original principal and interest at maturity. Owner Bonds are unsecured.

Why purchase an Owner Bond?

Whether it’s for $500 or $50,000, buying a Bond is a way to support your Co-op through economic participation.

How much does the Co-op want to raise?

The Co-op hopes to raise $600,000 by April 30, 2018, and we are capping total Bond sales at $800,000. During the 2010 Bond drive to help finance the opening of Willy West, we raised $1 Million and paid back all Bonds on time, with interest. We also recently held a 2016 Bond drive to finance Willy North, and raised $1.5 Million in Owner Bonds. The Co-op will rely on more traditional financing than originally planned if the goal is not reached.

How does the Co-op intend to use the $600,000?

The Owner Bond drive is part of a fiscally-responsible approach intended to protect the Co-op’s financial health well into the future. Owner Bond money will be used to help pay for costs associated with expanding Willy West, including furniture, fixtures, equipment and professional services. By raising Owner Bonds, the Co-op is able to maintain cash reserves for operating support and contingency.

Who is eligible to purchase Owner Bonds?

To purchase a Bond you must be a resident of the State of Wisconsin at the time of purchase. You also need to be a paid-in-full Fair Share equity Owner. If you are not a paid-in-full equity Owner, you can pay off the balance of your Fair Share the next time you are in the store. Owners must review the information packet before purchasing a Bond.

Are there any other restrictions?

Yes. $50,000 is the maximum any one Owner can buy in Bonds. All Bonds are unsecured and non-transferable.

When will Owner Bonds be available for purchase?

Owner Bonds are available starting January 15, 2018. 

 

Am I guaranteed to get my money back?

No. Although we have invested time and money over the last several years to research options for improving Willy West that serves our mission well, there is no guarantee of success. These loans involve risk and should be made only by owners who have determined that it is in their interest to support the growth of the Cooperative. All loans are unsecured and are subordinate to the claims of all other creditors.

Can the Co-op’s Board members, management, and staff purchase Bonds?

Any Willy Street Co-op Owner who meets the above eligibility requirements can purchase a Bond, including Board members, management, and staff.

When is the interest taxable to the purchasers of Owner Bonds?

Even though the Bonds are structured as zero coupon (e.g. all interest is paid at maturity instead of annually), interest is taxable annually.

Can I receive annual interest payments instead?

No. All Bonds are structured as Zero-Coupon Bonds and interest will be paid at maturity.

Can I get out early?

Yes. Bondholders mayrequest early redemption by giving the Co-op sixty days written notice and paying a penalty equal to one year’s interest deducted from the amount otherwise payable. All early redemptions must be approved by the Board prior to payout.

Are these Bonds callable?

Yes. This feature enables the Co-op to buy back the Bonds prior to maturity. The Board may exercise the call provision at its discretion, in the best interest of the Co-op.

Is the Co-op currently in a sound financial position?

Yes. At the end of fiscal year 2017, the Co-op had over $3.3M in cash and equivalents, and a net worth (aka total equity) of $4.8M. The Co-op’s existing operations are ahead of budget projections and sales and ownership are growing. We have almost 35,000 Owners.

How can I get additional information?

Any prospective lender with questions or interest in scheduling an appointment to purchase a Bond should email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or contact Customer Service at either location to be transferred to an authorized representative. Materials that will be made available by appointment to prospective lenders include WSGC’s articles of incorporation for viewing, and the Owner packet containing the Co-op’s bylaws, historical balance sheets and income statements, financial projections, various other business planning materials, and all necessary forms for completion. 

Contact Information

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Willy Street Co-op—East: 608-251-6776
Willy Street Co-op—West: 608-284-7800

Willy Street Co-op—North: 608-471-4422
Mail: 1457 E. Washington Ave., Madison, WI 53703

Authorized Representatives
Anya Firszt, General Manager
Paige Wickline, Director of Finance
Kirsten Moore, Director of Co-op Services
Becca Schill, Staff Accountant
Jason Himebauch, Accounts Payable/Receivable

Lindsey Hardy, Willy West Store Director
Frantseska Kois, Willy West Assistant Store Director
Katie O’Connell-Jones, West Owner Resources Coordinator

What kinds of Bonds are available?

Bond A:

For each $500 Bond purchased the Co-op will pay $538.45 at the end of 3 years.

Features
Maturity: 3 years
Interest rate: 2.5%
Type: Zero coupon
Interest compounded: Annually

Available purchase amount: Any $500 incrementup to $50,000.

Bond B:

For each $500 Bond purchased, the Co-op will pay $579.64 at the end of 5 years.

Features
Maturity: 5 years
Interest rate: 3%
Type: Zero coupon
Interest compounded: Annually

Available purchase amount: Any $500 increment up to $50,000.

Bond C:

For each $500 Bond purchased, the Co-op will pay $636.14 at the end of 7 years.

Features
Maturity: 7 years
Interest rate: 3.5%
Type: Zero coupon
Interest compounded: Annually

Available purchase amount: Any $500 increment up to $50,000.

Reader Archives