Even before the pandemic, many workers struggled to build wealth. Divisions between men and women, and between white households and households of color, are particularly striking. The pandemic has exacerbated and heightened awareness of these inequities, and there is a mounting sense of urgency to find practical solutions. Increasing participation in business ownership can help … Read More
This paper proposes that impact investors and other capital providers could catalyze employee ownership buyouts. Impact capital could become the lever used to redirect wealth into the hands of working Americans, creating a more just and equitable economy that is more resilient against future shocks. Investments in employee ownership buyouts could offer attractive midrange returns, … Read More
This report describes the role cooperatives can play in building healthy, equitable, and sustainable communities, and explains how to advance that work through federal, state, and local policy. The policy objectives presented are intended not to simply grow the field of cooperatives, but to enhance the work of cooperatives that address economic and racial disparities … Read More
This study by Jared Bernstein looks at why there are not more ESOPs and considers how to address potential barriers to entry. Drawing on a survey of 250 non-ESOP business owners and leaders, as well as interviews with business owners of employee-owned companies, it argues that education and awareness about the ESOP structure is key.
How National Van Lines retained its culture and success through employee ownership, guided by the ESOP advisory services of Verit Advisors.
For nearly a decade, I have had the pleasure of knowing and working with Maureen Beal, the third-generation owner and chairman and CEO of National Van Lines, the national company whose brand is synonymous with “moving.” Maureen, who began as a teen switchboard operator at the company and then in 1993 took the helm after … Read More
A favorite question of mine for any CEO: What’s the toughest thing about your business? I guarantee you any executive in the supermarket industry will rank among his or her top headaches the hiring and retention of good people, in an industry where service quality increasingly is the mark of differentiation, and worker turnover is … Read More
Peoria, Ill., without Caterpillar (CAT)? Benton Harbor, Mich., without Whirlpool (WHR)? Columbus, Ind., without Cummins Engine (CMI)? One of America’s under-appreciated relationships is the one between smaller cities and bigger companies, an often-happy exchange of quality-of-life for the combination of well-paying and skilled jobs, economic growth and stability, and corporate generosity to support cultural and … Read More
In Corvallis, Oregon, a couple miles north of the Oregon State University campus, sits a WinCo Foods discount supermarket and, unless you’re in need of groceries, you might drive by without noticing it. I assure you, however, it’s an extraordinary building, a laboratory of capitalism worthy of pilgrimages by the world’s great business schools. It … Read More
I hate to say it, but here goes: too many Americans, including highly-educated and experienced business people, have just plain given up on this country’s manufacturing industries, believing low-cost producers in China and elsewhere are unbeatable. And many of these same knowledgeable people would also tell you that solving the country’s retirement savings crisis is … Read More
On Chicago’s North Side, decades after other manufacturing companies went bust, migrated to the South or outsourced everything to China, S&C Electric – a $700 million-a-year maker of equipment for utilities – stood independent, profitable and debt free. Then, its controlling stockholder, John C. Conrad, died at age 89, and like so many family companies … Read More
Latinx people have long been an influential and integral part of the U.S. cooperative movement. Several Latinx-led organizations, such as Prospera in Oakland and Green Worker Cooperatives in the Bronx, have strongly influenced activity and models of cooperatives in their own localities and nationally. Furthermore, individual cooperative members who identify as Latinx bring their own … Read More
Transitioning your small business to employee ownership can have positive impacts on employee engagement, productivity, and retention; anchor a lasting legacy for your efforts building the business; and offer a financially rewarding exit path that can be supported by experienced professional assistance. Small business owners throughout the United States are increasingly seeing employees as highly … Read More
Cooperatives have been central to the development of New Orleans. Anne Gessler asserts that local cooperatives have reshaped its built environment by changing where people interact and with whom, helping them collapse social hierarchies and envision new political systems. Gessler tracks many neighborhood cooperatives, spanning from the 1890s to the present, whose alliances with union, … Read More
Series of videos about employee ownership produced by the Pennsylvania Center for Employee Ownership. The Millionaire Grocery Clerk At the grocery chain WinCo Foods, grocery clerks become millionaires. How? WinCo is employee owned through an ESOP. ESOPs are a win win win win – businesses get significant tax breaks, owners get paid full fair market … Read More
Netflix was among a small group of Silicon Valley companies to emerge from the technology bubble of the late 1990s a clear winner in terms of growth, market share, and profitability. That Netflix was able not only to prevail over this competition but also to thrive was largely attributable to the culture of freedom and … Read More
Olivia Nash, an analyst at leading hedge fund BlueShark Capital Management, had just finished listening to the hour-long earnings call for Twitter’s Q4 2017 results. Was Twitter doing well? That depended on which numbers she chose to believe. According to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), Twitter had recorded a $108M net loss for 2017. But … Read More
This case study focuses on Wawa, the convenience store, gas station and restaurant company. Founded in 1803, Wawa morphed over time from an iron foundry to a textile mill, to a dairy farm, dairy delivery business, grocery store, then convenience store. Dark clouds descended with the 2008 financial crisis. As competitors converged on Wawa, management … Read More
This significant new study shows that majority employee-owned companies with Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs) are outperforming non-employee owned companies during the COVID-19 pandemic in the areas of job retention, pay, benefits, and workplace health safety. The study reveals that ESOPs have been more proactive about ensuring the safety of employees during the pandemic and … Read More
This is a self-help manual for enhancing the culture and results at your ESOP company.
This two-page Business Action Guide describes the nation’s largest worker owned cooperative, Cooperative Home Care Associates, and its approach to effective onboarding and mentorship.
This 28-page report details the benefits of employee ownership in North Carolina as a way to preserve jobs and enhance community impacts.
This two-page Business Action Guide describes the nation’s largest worker owned cooperative, Cooperative Home Care Associates, and its innovative approach to scheduling.
This two-page Business Action Guide describes the Wikoff Color’s unique formula for employee ownership.
The case for employee ownership is undisputed. As philanthropists and government leaders grapple with how to address both long-entrenched and newly-emerging forms of economic insecurity, there is no better time to look to effective but lesser-known solutions, such as employee ownership. Even before the economic crisis brought on by COVID-19, income and wealth inequality and downward economic mobility for frontline workers were truths so obvious that one could visually observe them in most communities. Now, more than ever, we need solutions that create economic resiliency for workers and local economies.