Ever wonder why we call our employees, Partners? Well this is why! They own nearly 40% of the company through “Profit Sharing,” known as our Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP), which is funded 100% by the company. And now Stewart’s Shops has just announced a $10.5 million contribution to the ESOP – that’s an increase of $500,000 over the previous year! The company contribution equals approximately 15% of a partners’ pay in 2016.
In addition to the contribution, partners are expected to see double digit growth on their existing ESOP account balance, due to an increase in the company’s value. Participants have already seen a portion of that growth by receiving two dividends in 2016, totaling about 6% of their beginning balance. ESOP statements will be out in April.
Stewart’s Shops credits its growth to the growing customer demand for easy food and beverage options, as well as the expansion and reinvestment into its shops, and of course - the hard work of our partners. In 2016, the company built 6 new stores, re-built 10 existing locations, as well as completing 20 major remodels. Learn more about that here.
The ESOP contribution is available to anyone working 1,000 hours a year. Their balance should equal about a year’s pay after six years in the plan. ESOP participants are also offered a paid maternity program, discounted YMCA gym and daycare programs, as well as a Make Your Own Scholarship program which provides college scholarships to partners’ dependents.
Check out our careers and benefits here.