September 11, 2019

North Carolina Employee Ownership Center

On September 11, the North Carolina Employee Ownership Center announced its establishment. The center's mission is "to educate business owners and their advisors (lawyers, bankers, accountants, wealth advisors) on the benefits of employee ownership via Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs), worker cooperatives, and Employee Ownership Trusts (EOTs). NCEOC provides resources, case studies and articles, and a list of service providers who can assist with employee ownership transitions. NCEOC serves the entire state of North Carolina, with a particular focus on outreach to minority-owned businesses."

The number of retirement-age business owners will continue to grow in North Carolina. According to a report by NCEOC board member Patrick McHugh, North Carolina could have 1.5 million citizens of retirement age by 2030. In the words of Anne-Claire Broughton, the interim executive director, “This is a key moment in history with many private business owners retiring. Those who don’t have children ready to take the helm or a ready buyer are at risk of closing down. Exiting via employee ownership can provide an owner with excellent tax benefits while preserving their legacy, local jobs, and community impacts.”

The founding sponsors of NCEOC are the Employee Ownership Expansion Network, the Democracy at Work Institute, and the Industrial Commons. The NCEOC will hold a founding meeting on September 17; for more information, contact Anne-Claire Broughton (acbroughton@nceoc.org).