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How do you feel about employee ownership?

It’s not something we really see too much in English speaking countries. But it’s really quite a simply context and there’s no reason why you couldn’t create an entire political movement around it.

Quite simply everything in society is kinda the same except instead of corporations being owned by the capitalist class of inter generational wealth… corporations are owned mostly by their own employees. It doesn’t have to be entirely black and white, you can have a hybrid model.

But the general idea would be that employees in a company would naturally form an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT). Employees would be allowed to buy equity in their corporation that they worked for but would be allowed to buy this equity above the tax line on their pay check. This means that you can avoid paying income tax when buying equity in the company you work for. There are a couple of mechanisms through which this could be done but this is the first new part of the legislation.

Secondly stockholders who sell their equity to employees of a company would be allowed to sell their equity without paying capital gains tax.

Crucially… when the capitalist class sells equity to the working class there are TWO tax benefits, the buyer avoids income tax and the seller avoids capital gains tax. This would allow these transactions to occur at a price that was discounted to the listed market price. Crucially it creates a secondary market for employees to build up equity in their employer.

Now this employee owned equity would be held in a special vehicle, specifically each company would have an Employee Ownership Trust. Employees would have the right to buy a stake in this EOT and the EOT would be the vehicle that attracts the special tax benefits.

Ultimately the employees who own a stake in the EOT are the beneficiaries of the Trust and over time the Trust would grow to become the controlling shareholder in the corporation. As such in due course, the EOT would be able to elect board members to the board of the corporation. These board members would have a fiduciary duty to work for the interests of the shareholders they represent… but that’s now the EOT and the beneficiaries of the EOT are the employees.

When an employee leaves the company for whatever reason their stake in the EOT would be liquidated and they would be paid out in cash, this payout may or may not attract income tax (?).

But crucially this would allow for a huge improvement in employee benefits and corporations would be run in greater alignment with their own staff and not so much to the benefit of outside pools of international wealth.

This does not rely on the seizure of any private property, every transaction would be fair equitable and both parties free to consent or otherwise to every transaction.

Merely by introducing an EOT vehicle into legislation with special tax benefits for these types of transactions it would allow for the slow and steady transfer of private commercial equity from the capitalist class to the working class via a mechanism of perfectly fair payment.

How do people here feel about a proposal like this?

Have you seen anything like this before?

Do you think it is interesting?

Happy to discuss further and develop any ideas around this.

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