Vio.Me is a brand new experiment to see whether a formerly bankrupt company can be re-opened and operated by its workers. The workers of Vio.Me haven't been paid since mid 2011. The company used to be a building materials factory in Thessaloniki, Greece.
Recently, the company's general assembly of workers voted to take over factory operations and perform work under democratic principles. Production was to begin February 12, 2013. Greece and the rest of the world anxiously wait to see whether the worker takeover of operations can succeed without the previous bureaucratic levels of management.
The workers have crafted a serious business plan reflecting research on non-toxic cleaning products for home use. The factory is slated to make building materials like plaster, tile adhesive, grouting, and mortar. The workers are seeking donations from the public and from interested parties outside Greece to help jump-start operations, which have been halted for two long years.
If they are wise, the workers will also seek help from retired professionals throughout Greece to help reformulate the business, e.g. doctors, lawyers, accountants, etc.
Due to the high cost of transportation, the company must stay local by selling within Greece and its surrounding trading partners. Neighboring countries that are potential trading partners include Albania, Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Turkey. Nearby islands within Greece that can also do business with the company include Crete, Rhodes, Milos, Samos, Delos, Mykonos and over 100 others.
Over the next months, the workers must develop viable distribution networks so that its products can be sold on the open market. This task might require partnering with affiliates to get the job done quickly and efficiently.
Vio.Me could supply larger conglomerates in Europe with building products made by its workers. The advantage of seeking conglomerate partners would be to develop a predictable source of demand for Vio.Me's products.