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Employee ownership and the financial crisis
Witnesses from some major European companies: Voestalpine, Vivendi, Mondragon Corporación Cooperativa, Bank of Scotland, Veidekke and others. This will be the main piece of the Eighth European Meeting of Employee Ownership on May 18, 2009. Registration and practical information

Manifesto for the 2009 European Parliament Elections
Six proposals and questions to all candidates. Every day we receive new reactions from candidates and political leaders in all countries. All answers and reactions are published on the website. See all reactions

Press review
Much new information about employee ownership in March 2009, with 2.273 articles in this press review (on which 1.582 involving stock options and 242 about workers' cooperatives). We made a selection of  100 remarkable articles in 15 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Morocco, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, UK, USA.
Major political debates, particularly in France. Who is going to pay for the crisis? States? Employees? Employee owners? Top managers? What about stock options? To be forbidden? Reserved for a small number? Stock options for all? What about repricing underwater options? Rewriting remuneration to include more shares and less options?…
Even more: Are we living the end of share-based capitalism? The end of employee ownership?
Austria: New share plans for Voestalpine, for Erste Group Bank.
China: Promoting stock options incentives.
Germany: "Kapital für alle" (capital for all) !! IG Metall calls for employee share ownership in the Opel bailout. The new legislation for employee ownership is now in force. On the other hand, Angela Merkel's government introduce stronger regulation for top remunerations. "In der Krise boomt die Mitarbeiterbeteiligung" (the crisis boosts employee ownership).
: Workers cooperatives for business transmission are multiplying.
France: "Il faut encourager l'idée que les salariés puissent reprendre leur entreprise" (the idea of employee buyouts should be encouraged). Bailouts through workers cooperatives are multiplying. Hard political debate: Who is going to pay for the crisis? New legislation about stock options and top remunerations, in urgency. On the other hand: New employee share plans for Publicis, for BNP Paribas. Employee Savings Plans were increasing in 2008.
Italy: CISL (Italian first union) encourages employee share ownership to face the crisis.
Poland: New privatisations through employee ownership.
UK: Need new rules for top executive pay? On the other hand, FTSE-100 financial directors saw a huge loss on the value of shares they held in their own companies and a further significant loss on equity-linked assets tied up in their employer. Former Minister Alan Milburn (Labour Party) calls for employee share ownership to be made more accessible to a wider employee base.
USA: World's first professorship in employee ownership at Rudgers University. Underwater stock options get a lifeline from many firms, shareholders should expect a surge in the number of companies repricing options. Are ESOPs still a good idea for employee retirement security? In the face of the stock market's sharp decline, more people are calling for a reduction of employer stock in retirement plans. Data show this would be a serious error.

The press review is available on:

A political roadmap for employee ownership in Europe

  And the European Commission?...

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   With best regards



Marc Mathieu
Secretary General
Avenue Voltaire 135, B-1030 Brussels
Tel/fax: +32 (0)2 242 64 30
Web site:
EFES' objective is to act as the umbrella organization of employee owners, companies and all persons, trade unions, experts, researchers, institutions looking to promote employee ownership and participation in Europe.

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