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European conferences in Rome and in Brussels
Two major European conferences will be held in Rome on September 16-17 and in Brussels on November 26, 2010. The conference in Rome is about "Exercising employee shareholders' rights in European companies". Which are the good practices? Which models, which obstacles across Europe? Could it be more effective? The conference in Brussels will be part of the programme of the Belgian Presidency of the European Union – "Ten years of public policies for employee ownership in Europe – past, present, future". Read more

A cat is a cat
A cat is a cat. This is the present debate in the European Internet Forum on Employee Ownership.  The financial crisis brings new political awareness about employee ownership which increasingly appears the best option for its contribution to healthier corporate governance, long term vision and stability. The old concept of employee financial participation appears now obsolete and confusing. It's easy for you to join the Forum. Read more

Gnashing of teeth in France
The transposition of the Shareholders Rights Directive sets teeth on edge in France. The member states of the European Union have to transpose the Directive into their national legislation. This one aims to facilitate and encourage effective shareholder control in EU companies. However, France failed to implement it in due time. Furthermore, the transposition project by the Ministry of Justice brings new difficulties and obstacles. Read more

Press review
Much new information about employee ownership in April 2010, with 1.803 articles in this press review  (on which 723 involving stock options and 488 about workers' cooperatives). We made a selection of  39 remarkable articles in 13 countries: Australia, Bahamas, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden, UK, USA, South Africa.
Australia: An employee buyout of Forest Enterprises Australia would be possible - the Australian Employee Buyout Center at work.
Bahamas: Employee stock ownership is something that has been the trend for at least 20 years in trade union movement.
Canada: The risks of selling companies to employees.
Germany: Debates are still open about taxation on employee ownership.
France: Several employee buyouts at various stages. Twenty years of employee ownership for  Eiffage (33% employee-owned, 65.000 employees). Employee savings rebounded in 2009 (+19% but still -3% compared to 2007) in 230.000 companies (+9%).
India: Suzlon Energy has begun a mega HR exercise; of the total 11,000 employees, at least 90 per cent of employees will be granted 1,500 share options each.
Poland: Free bonus shares for all employees in coal mines. The new privatisation plan is now at work, also through a dedicated website.
Spain: Employee-owned companies (sociedades laborales) as an alternative to the financial crisis.
: Delivery of shares to the participants in the long-term share-savings program, Skanska Employee Ownership Program.
UK: How to improve the public sector procurement process? The John Lewis business model – in particular, employee ownership – is attracting interest among politicians desperate to find ways to deliver more with less. Labour, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats all support a new wave of workers' co-operatives. Transparency still awaited about the UK Employee Ownership Index, showing that employee-owned companies outperform those from the FTSE all-share index.
USA: ESOP no fable; employee ownership becomes more attractive. Employee stock ownership plans, or employee-owned businesses, actually gained in popularity during the Great Recession. According to statistics from the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO), there were 11,400 ESOPs in the United States in 2009, roughly 400 more than in 2008 and 800 more than in 2007.

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Marc Mathieu
Secretario General
Avenue Voltaire 135, B-1030 Bruxelles
Tel/fax: +32 (0)2 242 64 30
El objetivo de EFES es actuar como la organización federativa de los accionistas asalariados, de empresas y de todas las personas, sindicatos, expertos, investigadores o instituciones que actuan para promover el accionariado asalariado y la participación en Europa.

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