Shared Interest Society is registered under the Co-operative and
Community Benefit Societies Act 2014 and is a member of
Co-operatives UK. Our members share our vision of a
world where justice is at the heart of trade finance. We form an
important link between UK social investors and fair trade
organisations overseas needing finance to improve their livelihoods.
Our UK based account holders invest anything between £100 and
£100,000. These funds are pooled and used to provide credit
services and low interest loans to fair trade farmers and artisans
in the developing world.
Shared Interest Society provides loans and credit services to
over 400 businesses in 58 countries.
For over 25 years we have been providing bespoke financial
services as a vital means of support to some of the most
disadvantaged communities across the globe. We work with businesses
ranging from sole trader handcraft organisations to large scale
coffee co-operatives and fair trade buyers.
We offer a variety of lending options that enable our
customers to pre-finance orders, purchase essential machinery and
infrastructure, make advance payments to farmers and artisans,
finance the collection of harvests, and order new stock for fair
Our mission is to provide financial services and business
support to make livelihoods and living standards better for people
as they trade their way out of poverty. We work collaboratively and
innovatively with those who share our commitment to fair and just
trade. With a community of investors and the support of donors and
volunteers, we seek to contribute to a world where justice is at
the heart of fair trade finance.
We are not a microfinance organisation and we do not lend to
start-up enterprises or individuals. All of the businesses we work
with need to be fair trade registered and show evidence of three
years of trading, normally producing audited accounts.
We normally lend on an unsecured basis knowing that many of our
customers either do not have any security to pledge, or have
already used their assets to secure conventional borrowing. We do
charge interest to our customers. This interest rate is based
on the cost to Shared Interest of producing the funds, including
the risk attached to the specific organisation and is competitive
in comparison to loans available in country.
We have just over 9,000 Share Accounts in operation at
You can read our terms and conditions here.
Investing further in Shared Interest can be done in a number of
ways, you can you make an investment securely online with your
debit card, you can alternatively use the form in your Investor
Pack to set up a standing order, or use the Bank Giro Credit slips
Don't forget to let us know if you need more slips, contact
membership on: 0191 233 9102 or email email@example.com
Click here for further information on
managing your Share Account.
Broadly speaking, our lending falls into two categories: funds
lent directly to fair trade producer groups in developing
countries, and funds lent to fair trade wholesale or retail
businesses in developed countries (buyers). This year we made an
overall total of £51.4m in payments - an increase of £3.4m on last
year. As loans are repaid, we are able to lend the money out again.
Last year we lent our Share Capital one and a half times. Lending
directly to producers was the highest in the history of Shared
The money you put into a Share Account is an investment and you
can withdraw your funds. As with all investment products there is a
If we experienced substantial bad debts in one year, wiping out
our reserves, we would have to suspend withdrawals or make a charge
against Share Accounts. The interest rate payable can also vary
without notice. You cannot lose more than you have invested,
including any interest which has been added to your account. We
have never had to make a charge against the value of Share Accounts
during the entire operation of the Society from its commencement in
1990 to date.
Shared Interest is a Community Benefit Society. We are not
regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and we are not a
member of any investment protection schemes.
Our Board of Directors sets the rate of interest payable.
Our interest rate is currently 0.25%.
You can read about our history here.
Shared Interest is an international organisation, our head
office is in Newcastle upon Tyne and we have offices in Kenya,
Peru, Costa Rica and Ghana.
'Our Shared Interest' is an online portal for members, where you
can log in securely to view statements, make investments and
withdrawals, and access messages.
To register for online access with Our Shared Interest, please
contact us on 0191 233 9132 with an email address you would like to
use. We will ask you questions to verify your identity for
Alternatively, you can write to us with your Shared Interest
account number, email address, and signature for identity
Under current laws an individual Shared Interest account can
have a maximum investment of £100,000. You can however have more
than one account per household. To remain open, your account always
needs to contain at least £100.
Yes, you can open a Share Account on behalf of a minor.
You can also open an account as a gift for friends or family.
Download a gift pack here.
The Society's annual financial accounts can be found here. To request a
hard copy of the Director's Report and Accounts contact membership
on 0191 2339102 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
You can, however, how you do this depends on the balance of your
account. To find out more please contact membership on 0191 2339102
or email email@example.com
Founded in 2004, Shared Interest Foundation is a
registered charity that provides practical support to businesses in
the developing world. This involves training that allows
individuals to create sustainable employment in the community.