Taking Employee Ownership to Scale

Earlier this summer, Managing Partner Keith Butcher and Principal Ian Mohler were invited to participate in The Democracy Collaborative’s Learn + Design session for its 50 by 50 Project for employee ownership. The Democracy Collaborative works to carry out an economic vision where shared ownership and control creates more equitable and inclusive outcomes, fosters ecological sustainability, and promotes flourishing democratic and community life. The 50 by 50 Project aims to have 50 million employee owners in the United States by 2050. The constituents of the Project are not only employees whose stake in their companies’ success increases, but founder-owners and selling shareholders looking to preserve their lives’ work and legacy.

The Learn + Design session was organized to develop a common agenda for bringing employee ownership to scale and to explore the possibility of a joint initiative by participants that would build upon efforts already underway. Participants’ backgrounds varied and included current employee owners, economic development and policy professionals, labor leaders, funders, business leaders, bankers, and finance professionals. Together, these experts explored how to create conditions for collaboration to build a greater community of advocacy for employee ownership. They evaluated the current landscape for employee ownership in the United States and brainstormed on the process going forward to drive employee ownership to become a more mainstream structure.

“Mosaic Capital was a standout for its sterling job of representing how serious capital is brought to ESOPs,”

Mr. Butcher and Mr. Mohler participated in a small group panel at the two-day session. They discussed the importance of employee ownership and its current landscape, identified key shifts needed to achieve the goal, and prioritized solutions and project plans for carrying out the next steps. The Democracy Collaborative Senior Fellow and Executive VP Marjorie Kelly noted, “Mosaic Capital was a standout for its sterling job of representing how serious capital is brought to ESOPs and exploring how innovations in capital can help the whole field to scale more rapid. Their voice in the room was incredibly valuable.”

To learn more about how the 50 by 50 Project is taking off, download The Democracy Collaborative’s comprehensive report on the Learn + Design session. To learn more about how Mosaic works to empower employees through shared ownership, explore our white paper on ESOPs.