EFES NEWSLETTER - JUNE 2014
move in the UK
High fiscal incentives are the base of the successful policy
to promote employee ownership through ESOPs (Employee Stock
Ownership Plan) in the USA. In contradiction with Europe,
this allowed American public policies to promote employee
ownership in SMEs. Some 11.000 ESOP companies can be found
in the USA compared to only 300 quite similar cases in Europe.
It is now generally admitted in the UK that such policy has
also to be promoted here, leading to higher productivity,
greater levels of innovation and outstanding financial performances.
Finance Bill 2014 designs two new tax reliefs to encourage
and support the shift to employee-owned companies:
Under the first new tax
relief, the sale of a controlling interest in a business to
an employee ownership trust, will be entirely free from capital
Under the second tax relief,
bonuses of up to £3.600 per tax year paid to employees of
companies controlled by an employee ownership trust benefit
from an income tax exemption.
These new incentives are still relatively modest compared
to those for ESOPs in the USA but the UK is clearly showing
the right way for all European countries.
We have a selection of 53 remarkable articles in 13 countries
in May 2014: Australia, Austria, Finland, France, Germany,
Italy, Mali, Morocco, Netherlands, Poland, UK, USA, Zimbabwe.
Australia: The new tax regime was a disaster for employee
Austria: The Employee Ownership Foundation owns 10%
of Vienna Airport.
Finland: New employee share plans for Aspo Group. The
law on "personnel funds" didn't meet all expectations.
France: New study on employee ownership: France is
number one in Europe. New employee share plans for Orange
and for Nexans. New legislation opens doors for more employee
representation on boards. A French vision on the British John
Germany: Higher fiscal incentives are required to promote
employee share plans. Siemens will double the number of its
Italy: Historic agreement for employee share ownership
in Banca Intesa Sanpaolo. New employee share plan for Telecom
Mali: Unions ask for the implementation of employee
share ownership as a main piece of the privatization plan
of Malian telecoms.
Morocco: New employee share plan for Vinci.
Netherlands: The companies that changed the world economy
in the last decades are all companies where employees hold
a large part of the business.
Poland: Conference on employee share ownership.
UK: A new tax relief available from 6 April 2014 will
provide full exemption from Capital Gain Tax on the sale of
a controlling interest to an employee ownership trust.
USA: Lynn Williams was president of the United Steel
Workers union and a supporter of employee ownership. How an
ESOP can benefit financial professionals. Some surprising
Zimbabwe: Indigenisation Policy Review: Employee ownership
is a key-element of the indigenisation policy.
The full press review is available
political roadmap for employee ownership in Europe
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