What's at stake: Last week MEC announced it had obtained court protection from creditors and planned to sell its business to the private equity firm.
Why is there a fight: MEC has a unique corporate structure in that it is a consumer co-operative, meaning that customers who shop there must be "members" of the corporation. First-time customers at MEC must pay a $5 fee to become members. This allows them to, in theory, have some influence over corporate policies through voting for Board members. But members were not consulted over the sale to the PE firm.
What the members want: MEC members opposed to the plan have raised a $50,000 legal fund and plan to fight the sale, calling for an emergency members' meeting to replace the Board of Directors.
What's next: MEC members are hoping to get representation in the court process and present alternative proposals that would maintain Canadian ownership of the business. Whether this happens will be determined by what's decided in court.