The National Center for Employee Ownership Has Announced That Homeland Is the 37th Largest Majority Employee Owned Company in the U.S.

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HAC, Inc., the parent company of Homeland and United of Oklahoma, has been named the 37th largest employee owned company in the United States. The company became an ESOP in December of 2011.

Homeland and United Supermarkets of Oklahoma, as part of HAC, Inc., has been named the 37th largest majority employee owned company in the U.S. by the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO). The NCEO's 2014 Employee Ownership 100 list includes the nation’s largest companies that are at least 50% owned by an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) or other broad-based employee ownership plan. Many, including Homeland and United, are 100% employee-owned. The great majority (90%) of the companies on this list have ESOPs, although a number of them have more than one plan. Other vehicles for employee ownership on this list include profit sharing plans invested in company stock, stock purchase plans, 401(k) plans, and a worker cooperative.

The companies on the list employ approximately 710,000 people worldwide, up from 674,000 in 2013. Companies on both the 2013 and 2014 lists saw their employment rise approximately 4%. This year, the smallest company on the list had 1,200 employees, up from 675 in 2001.

Homeland and United became an ESOP on December 27th, 2011. As an ESOP participant employees benefit in multiple ways, including beneficial ownership interest in the vested value of the stock allocated to their ESOP account at no cost to them. The value of the stock in an employee’s account is based on the financial results of HAC, Inc. and employees are part of a team whose actions and decisions impact the financial results and the future value of the company. Homeland’s ESOP also includes an ownership committee made up of team members from all levels and departments within the company.

Employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs), the most common form of employee ownership for companies on the list, are an employer-sponsored benefit plan. Companies contribute stock or cash to buy stock to an employee stock ownership trust. Generally, all full-time employees who have worked for a year or more are in the plan and receive allocations of stock every year based on relative pay or a more level formula. They get their shares after they leave and can sell them back to the company at an appraised fair market value.

Research on ESOPs shows that:

  • ESOP companies grow about 2.5% per year faster after an ESOP is set up than would have been expected based on their performance relative to peer companies prior to an ESOP.
  • ESOP participants average about 2.5 times more in total retirement assets than do employees in non-ESOP companies.
  • ESOP companies lay people off at one-third to one-fourth the rate of other companies.

The National Center for Employee Ownership is a non-profit research, information, and research organization on all forms of broad-based employee ownership. Details about the NCEO and employee ownership are available at

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Christina Pfenninger
HAC, Inc.
+1 (405) 290-3441
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