A Closer Look at Business Education: Employee Ownership  - CLEO Skip to main content


The recent collapse of Bear Stearns and the class-action employee lawsuit filed against U.S. Sugar have drawn media attention to the potential negative consequences of employee ownership programs for stock-owning employees. For many companies, however, employee ownership remains a viable and rewarding strategy to share equity and profits with employees. According to the 2006 General Social Survey, between one third and one half of all employees participate directly in company performance through various combinations of employee ownership, stock options, profit sharing and gainsharing. Among the hundreds of highly successful public companies with some form of employee ownership are Apple, Google, Procter & Gamble, PepsiCo, and Starbucks. Employee-owned companies also feature prominently on Fortune magazine’s annual list of the 100 Best Companies to Work for in America.