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Oro Integrated Reaches for Stars, Deepens Roots

Founded by 28 co-operators in March 1966 to provide opportunities for vendors, entrepreneurs, self-employed, teachers and farmers, Oro Integrated Cooperative has gone a long way.
OIC had sturdy roots, having co-op champions among its list of founders, such as Atty. Mordina Cua (a NATCCO pioneer), and Aquilino Pimentel, Jr. who authored the Cooperative Code of 1990.  The OIC became the first open type “community-based” cooperative in Region 10.  It also became the first co-op to operate an ATM.  From initial capital of 88 pesos, it is now a Billionaire Co-op with P3.59 Billion in Assets.
In 2012, OIC celebrated its Golden Year, and it was then that the NATCCO Consultancy Team conducted its Diagnostics.
The team is using APPEAL Ratios (acronym for Asset Quality – Delinquency, Protection Ratios, Effective Financial Structure Ratios for Deposits, loans , Share Capital and Borrowings), a tool they developed based on the PEARLS, COOP-PESOS and others, which reflect the over-all condition of the co-op.
Almost nothing escapes from theAPPEAL Tool.  What caught the trained eyes of the Consultants were not only the ratios, but rather the numbers.
Delinquency in terms of PAR value, for instance, was 15% in 2016 and might be ignored by some.  But in terms of value, it was considerable – at P150 Million only for >12 months accounts!
Plus, the loan Portfolio Structure of the co-op was going down from 72% in 2013 to 52% in 2016.
The Consultancy then recommended in the 2017 interventions  to install a Remedial Management Unit to the three branches with portfolio >12 in Yacapin, Cogon, and Baungon branches.  
 Job descriptions and placement of people were done as well as the tools, guidelines, and policies were drafted.  Coaching was also done for the Sales Team.
While OIC indeed had gone a long way, it had somehow lost its way when it began to focus on larger loans where asset-based lending is much required. Large . . . as in the range of P10 to P20 Million!
At the Strategic Planning facilitated by the Consultants in November 2017, the OIC leaders decided to go back to their Mission.  OIC would improve engagement to its members, modernize its ICT system and exercise financial discipline, empower employees, establish succession, and help members further their entrepreneurial skills.
OIC also began to offer rent-to-own padyak and other services, focusing more on the reason why they were created (i.e. for vendors, entrepreneurs, self-employed, teachers, and farmers)
Clearly, not all the needs of the members are financial. 
For OIC to focus on members’ financial needs, the co-op established subsidiaries such as Golden Grains Marketing Cooperative to help members in agriculture; OIC Foundation for community activities and scholarships; and soon, a real estate corporation for members’ and staff’s housing needs.
But overall, the co-op needs to be sustainable in order to provide these services.  During the recent Sharing of Best Practices Meeting, OIC ranked first based on the APPEAL Ratios of December 2017.  This shows that the co-op’s savings and credit operations, which is the bread and butter of the business, is following strict financial disciplines over the years of interventions.  Hence, OIC is now expanding services to its members, without compromising the sustainability of operations.

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