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              EUROPEAN SURVEY 2013
   The whole information about employee ownership
   and employee share plans, top executives and
   common employees in European companies,
   corporate governance and profit-sharing, employee
   representation on boards and discrimination in
   employee shareholders' voting rights, and a
   comparison between listed companies and non-
   listed employee-owned companies.
   150 pages, 100 tables and graphs.  More info

  Discrimination in voting rights
There is no discrimination for or against employee shareholders' voting rights in most European countries. However, significant discrimination can be observed in six countries. Employee shareholders' voting rights are generally multiplied in France due to the fact that shares enjoy a double voting right when held for at least two years. At the contrary, employee shareholders' voting rights suffer negative discrimination in five other countries: Denmark, Germany, Finland, Sweden and The Netherlands. Typical cases there are companies issuing two classes of shares, A-shares with 10 votes and B-shares with 1 vote. Controlling owners hold high voting shares but employee share plans are based on low voting ones. This way, employee shareholders' voting rights are severely discriminated, in up to 45% of large companies in Sweden. More info

Press review
We have a selection of 35 remarkable articles in 9 countries in February 2014: Australia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, UK, USA, Zimbabwe.
Australia: Deloitte recommends changes to tax rules to make share schemes easier for SMEs.
France: Amundi announces the results of its annual barometer of employee share ownership. Workers cooperatives for business transmission. Twelve recommendations of the French Institute of Directors about employee representation on boards.
Germany: New employee share plan for Siemens. CEO Joe Kaeser calls for higher tax incentives for employee share ownership in Germany.
Ireland: A windfall for employee shareholders in Bord Gaís.
Italy: Agreement between Banca MPS and employee shareholders' associations. The EFES welcomes the new Italian Government.
Spain: The crisis of Mondragon, in search for new strategy. New employee share plan for Gas Natural Fenosa. New dedicated investment fund for employee-owned companies in the Basque Country. Isofoton could be rescued as a sociedad laboral.
UK: Swedish Handelsbanken frustrated by tax treatment of its share scheme in the UK. Philip Baxendale was a prominent figure of employee ownership in the UK. For the EOA, employee ownership creates emotional buy-in.
USA: ESOPs are a tax-efficient way to reward employees and provide liquidity for shareholders. The difference between an ESOP and a human being shareholder is that the ESOP pays no taxes. The 1974 ESOP law and later amendments were designed to encourage employee ownership thanks to high tax benefits.
Zimbabwe: Employee Share Ownership Trusts are part of the indigenization policy.

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   With best regards



Marc Mathieu
Secretary General
Avenue Voltaire 135, B-1030 Brussels
Tel: +32 (0)2 242 64 30 - Fax: +32 (0)2 808 30 33
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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