June 2015 Roundup

It’s the last day of June so a monthly wrap-up it is!

Upcoming 2015 July events

Support for ESOPs

The June 2015 Washington Report from the ESOP Report

Welcome to new corporate members

We shared a pic of the 2015 Employee Ownership Month Poster Contest winner

Show your ownership spirit

The June 2015 ESOP Report was published

Registration is now open for the 2015 Employee Owner Retreat

Jobs remained stable in the employee stock ownership sector

ESOP advocates list

Spring Advocacy Kits

Dates announced for the 2015 Employee Owner Retreat

We noted how to access Issue Briefs and the Membership Directory on the website

Carris Reels beats the drum for ESOPs

New Report Discusses Inclusive Prosperity

Last Thursday, the Center for American Progress released a new report, Report of the Commission on Inclusive Prosperity, that discusses the need for economic growth that ensures wealth is shared broadly. The report is authored by Lawrence H. Summers, the President Emeritus of Harvard University and Ed Balls, the Labour and Co-operative Member of Parliament, or MP, for Morley and Outwood and Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer in the British Parliament. They are the co-chairs of the Inclusive Prosperity Commission.

Of interest for ESOP advocates, the following was noted in the report:

“In the United States, specific policies that could help meet these goals include:

Increasing workers’ share of the economic pie, raise wages and incomes

  • Create tax incentives for companies to share profits with their workers in well-structured, broad-based profit-sharing programs and increase tax incentives for the formation of employee stock-ownership plans, or ESOPs.”

The full report can be found here.

The Center for American Progress press release on the report is here.

In 2013, the Center for American Progress released the report, Growing the Wealth: How Government Encourages Broad-Based Inclusive Capitalism, which also discussed the idea of inclusive capitalism. The 2013 report was authored by David Madland and Karla Walter. Ms. Walter, the Associate Director of the American Worker Project at the Center for American Progress, is a 2014-2015 Louis O. Kelso Fellow doing research in the employee ownership field. More info here.

Release: ESOP Companies Report Economic Growth in 2013

We normally don’t post more than once a day but we wanted to share this release sent out by the Employee Ownership Foundation today announcing the results of the 23rd Annual Economic Performance Survey.

FoundationFor Immediate Release: September 15, 2014

ESOP Companies Report Economic Growth in 2013

September 15, 2014 (Washington, DC) – Results from the Employee Ownership Foundation’s 23rd Annual Economic Performance Survey of ESOP (employee stock ownership plan) companies show that ESOPs continue to see increased economic growth. Additionally, ESOP companies continue to have increased share value, report high productivity among employee owners, and have overwhelming support for the ESOP among leaders of the companies, according to the results of this 2014 survey which was conducted among members of The ESOP Association in the summer of 2014.

Since the Employee Ownership Foundation’s annual economic survey began 23 years ago, a very high percentage, 93% of survey respondents, have consistently agreed that creating employee ownership through an ESOP was “a good business decision that has helped the company.” It should be noted that this figure has been over 85% for the last 14 years the survey has been conducted. In addition, 76% of respondents indicated the ESOP positively affected the overall productivity of the employee owners. In terms of revenue and profitability — 70% of respondents noted that revenue increased and 64% of respondents reported that profitability increased. In terms of stock value, the majority of respondents, 80%, stated the company’s stock value increased as determined by outside independent valuations; 18% of the respondents reported a decline in share value; 2% reported no change. The survey also asked respondents what year the ESOP was established. Among those responding to this survey, the average age of the ESOP was 16 years with the average year for establishment being 1998.

“As we’ve said before, research proves that ESOPs, and companies with other forms of broad-based employee ownership, provide more sustainable employment for U.S. workers,” said Employee Ownership Foundation President, J. Michael Keeling. “Our national leaders need to take note, step up, and encourage broad-based inclusive capitalism and increase employee ownership to ensure sustainable employment and more income for average pay employee owners. It’s the best jobs policy we have in this country.”

The survey asked companies to indicate their performance in 2013 relative to 2012:

  • 65% indicated a better performance; 21% indicated a worse performance; and 14% indicated a nearly identical performance to the previous year
  • 70% indicated revenue increased; 30% indicated revenue decreased
  • 64% indicated profitability increased; 36% indicated profitability decreased
  • 64% of companies have created an ESOP education program or ESOP advisory committee since establishing the ESOP

The 2014 Economic Performance Survey was distributed by the Employee Ownership Foundation to The ESOP Association’s 1,500+ members in June 2014. The results are based on 503 responses, a 34% response rate.

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The Employee Ownership Foundation is The ESOP Association’s affiliated 501 (c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting employee ownership – www.employeeownershipfoundation.org.

The ESOP Association is the national trade association for companies with employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and the leading voice in America for employee ownership. The core cause of The ESOP Association is the belief that employee ownership will improve American competitiveness, increase productivity through greater employee participation, and strengthen our free enterprise economy. More information: website – www.esopassociation.org and blog – www.esopassociationblog.org.

Iowa Economic Development Authority’s ESOP Initiative Program

The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) has a new ESOP initiative program. According to the IEDA website:

“In addition to the general economic benefits, the IEDA believes that ESOPs are a promising tool for retaining businesses in Iowa communities. Across the state, there are businesses that have been operated in local communities for many years by owners committed to the welfare of the community. But when those owners wish to retire or to start a new business, they often need to sell the business. It can be a great thing for the community if the business is sold to the employees, through an ESOP, rather than to an out-of-state buyer that may shift jobs and profits out of the community. For these reasons, the State of Iowa recently passed two pieces of ESOP-related legislation.”

The ESOP Association’s Iowa/Nebraska Chapter recently hosted an ESOP Professional Roundtable where this initiative was a topic of discussion. Additional information can be found on the IEDA website including information about the ESOP formation assistance program which will help Iowa companies interested in ESOPs to defray the costs of the feasibility study.

“This is very positive evidence of a cost effective state program to promote ESOPs,” said ESOP Association President, J. Michael Keeling. “It’s very encouraging to see states considering programs to facilitate ESOP creation; clearly more state officers are seeing the benefits that employee-owned companies bring to the local economy. Iowa is certainly a leader on the local ESOP front — kudos to our Iowa Chapter leaders.”

NEWS: ESOP Companies Report Economic Growth in 2012

The Employee Ownership Foundation sent out the following release today on the results of the 22nd Annual Economic Performance Survey.

For Immediate Release: September 10, 2013

For More Information: Amy Gwiazdowski, 202/293-2971, amy AT esopassociation.org

ESOP Companies Report Economic Growth in 2012

September 10, 2013 (Washington, DC) – Results from the Employee Ownership Foundation’s 22nd Annual Economic Performance Survey of ESOP (employee stock ownership plan) companies show that ESOPs saw increased economic growth over the past year. Additionally, ESOP companies continue to have increased share value, report high productivity, and overwhelming support among leaders of the companies, according to the results of this survey which was conducted among members of The ESOP Association.

Since the annual survey began 22 years ago, a very large majority, 94% of survey respondents, reported that creating employee ownership through an ESOP was “a good business decision that has helped the company.” It should be noted this figure has consistently been over 85% since 2000. In addition, 77% of respondents indicated the ESOP positively affected the overall productivity of the employees. In terms of profitability and revenue, both were up from previous years — 70% of respondents reported profitability increased and 78% of respondents noted revenue increased. In terms of stock value, the majority of respondents, 83%, stated the company’s stock value increased as determined by outside independent valuations; 14% of the respondents reported a decline in share value, and 3% reported no change. The survey also asked respondents what year the ESOP was established. Among those responding to this survey, the average age of the ESOP was 16 years with the average year for establishment being 1997.

“Employees with employee stock ownership, including those with ESOPs, in general, have more sustainable employment. Our national leaders need to take note and understand that we need national policies to encourage employee stock ownership among working Americans. It’s the best jobs policy we have,” said Employee Ownership Foundation President, J. Michael Keeling.

The survey asked companies to indicate their performance in 2012 relative to 2011:

  • 71% indicated a better performance; 17% indicated a worse performance; and 12% indicated a nearly identical performance to the previous year
  • 78% indicated revenue increased; 22% indicated revenue decreased
  • 70% indicated profitability increased; 30% indicated profitability decreased
  • 64% of companies have created an ESOP education program or ESOP advisory committee since establishing the ESOP

The 2013 Economic Performance Survey was distributed to The ESOP Association’s over 1,500 members in June 2013. The results are based on 495 responses, a 35% response rate.

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The Employee Ownership Foundation is The ESOP Association’s affiliated 501 (c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting employee ownership – www.employeeownershipfoundation.org.

The ESOP Association is the national trade association for companies with employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and the leading voice in America for employee ownership. The core cause of The ESOP Association is the belief that employee ownership will improve American competitiveness, increase productivity through greater employee participation, and strengthen our free enterprise economy. More information: website – www.esopassociation.org and blog – www.esopassociationblog.org.

A look ahead this month

It’s hard to believe it is September already. We thought we’d get out the crystal ball and see what the future holds for ESOP Association members this month.

The 2013 Las Vegas Conference & Trade Show app will be released in the coming weeks. Keep an eye on this space for links. Also, speaking of Vegas, the early bird registration ends on September 20th. If you’re joining us, or planning to, here’s where you’ll find information including: online registration (conference and hotel), trade show booth signup form, and a preliminary agenda which includes info on the new educational track for in-house ESOP trustees.

October is Employee Ownership Month! We’ll be starting off the celebration early on the blog with some re-caps of 2012 celebrations. If your company is planning an event this year, let us know and we’ll highlight your event here. Drop us an email at media AT esopassociation.org with details. Don’t forget the photos!

The Economic Performance Survey results are being tabulated. We’ll have the results from the 22nd Annual Survey soon and report back on the economic performance of employee owned companies in 2012.

Tax reform — we’re doing our best to keep members up-to-date on a monthly basis. We’ll have another report very soon. Stay tuned. If you’d like to catch-up, our YouTube page has the most recent updates.

Have questions? Something you’re curious about? Let us know.

ESOP Company News

Carl Warren & Company Honored as 2013 ESOP Company of the Year

And the accolades keep pouring in for the 2013 ESOP Company of the Year, Carl Warren & Company, headquartered in Placentia, CA. The company has received letters from Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) and Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA) congratulating the employee owners in the Georgia location; a certificate of recognition from Placentia Mayor, Scott Nelson; and a letter of congratulations from Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) to the employee owners in the Kansas location. Below are links to the letters and certificate.

Senator Saxby Chambliss Recognition

Senator Johnny Isakson Recognition

City of Placentia, CA Mayor Scott Nelson Certificate Recognition

Senator Jerry Moran Recognition

Founded in 1944, Carl Warren & Company has provided claim and litigation management services to clients for almost 70 years. The employee-owned company employs approximately 350 individuals with 35 offices across the United States. In 1975, the company established the ESOP, and 38 years later, the company and employee owners are even more dedicated to the ESOP. The employee owners of Carl Warren have built a culture they are proud of and devote time to the ESOP community and share the idea of employee ownership with companies in their area. For more information, please visit: www.carlwarren.com.

Thanks to Carl Warren’s Caryn Siebert for sharing this information with The ESOP Association and congratulations to the employee owners of Carl Warren & Company.