EFES NEWSLETTER - MARCH 2011
European Single Market for employee ownership
European Commissioner Michel Barnier organised a vast consultation
about the new "Single Market Act". The single
market is all about bringing down barriers and simplifying
existing rules across Europe. It would also include a European
single market for employee ownership. Read
Employee ownership improves company performance
There is a lot of social science evidence today that shows
the combination of meaningful broad-based employee ownership
with a team-oriented corporate culture improves company
performance. Many research works have been done in the U.S.
for long. A first econometric work is now also available
about French companies: According to the Center for Strategic
Analysis, the social performance of a company having employee
share ownership is 52% higher than that of companies which
have neither employee share ownership nor employee savings
Much new information about employee ownership in February
2011, with 1.520 articles in this press review (on which
489 involving stock options and 441 about workers' cooperatives).
We made a selection of 41 remarkable articles in 13 countries:
Argentina, Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, India,
Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, UK, USA.
Argentina: The Federation of Self-Managed Workers
Cooperatives (FACTA) was set up in 2006.
Austria: Steel company VoestAlpine recently celebrated
the 10th anniversary of its successful employee
Canada: Rescuing failed companies through workers
France: Business transmission has to be facilitated
through employee buyouts. Employee shareholders hold 20%
of Steria. The Financial Market Authority has just issued
its conclusions about employee savings and employee share
ownership schemes. Still no solution about potential conflicts
of interest relating to the exercise of the voting rights
attached to the shares held by employee savings funds (FCPE).
Germany: In international comparisons, employee ownership
appears clearly underdeveloped in Germany compared to other
European countries and the USA. Why?
Spain: Mondragon Cooperatives pointed out as a good
example in the British press.
India: Newly listed public sector companies may soon
be allowed to offer stock options to their executives.
Financial speculation about employee ownership at Banco
Popolare di Milano.
Netherlands: Holland Colours wins the award for
the most sustainable employee share scheme.
Struggles over employee privatization in coal mines. The
new 2009 scheme seems to be a fiasco while Vice-Prime Minister
Pawlak organises new conferences.
UK: Mutualisation of public services is at the heart
of the government's "Big Society". Employee-owned
mutuals, in which frontline staff can take over and run
their services, should be the way of improving public services.
A new taskforce will support employees working in public
services who wish to form employee-owned mutuals.
A number of new ESOP companies. A number of years ago, Professor
Joseph Blasi noticed that the phenomenon of employee ownership
in U.S. companies was growing and evolving, yet attracting
little scholarly attention. That would soon change.
A number of tax benefits make ESOPs a compelling choice.
The full press review is available
political roadmap for employee ownership in Europe
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