SANTA ROSA, Calif., Jun 07, 2017 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Oliver’s
Market, Sonoma County’s largest locally owned and independent
grocer, announces the sale of 43% of the company to employees
through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). The company
also registered with the state of California as a Social
Purpose Corporation, allowing leadership to consider employees,
the environment, and the community in addition to financial
position when considering any business decision.
“I am doing these things to preserve the legacy of Oliver’s for
the future, and for our employees,” Oliver’s Market founder and
president Steve Maass said. “I have looked at many possible
scenarios for securing the future of Oliver’s in recent years,
and creating an ESOP company was a great move for us. We all
see small, independent businesses disappear every day, and I am
proud to say that we are doing everything in our power to
remain local and independently run.”
The vesting program will give employees with over ten years of
service full vesting in their allocated shares immediately, and
all eligible employees employed at the 1/1/17 start of the
program will be fully vested in three years.
“Steve chose to sell Oliver’s to the employees instead of
selling to an outside company to preserve the legacy of
Oliver’s and remain locally and independently operated,” said
Jill Olsen, Oliver’s chief financial officer. “We are also more
committed than ever to serving our employees, our customers,
and the communities where we do business as a Social Purpose
Corporation. This is a pivotal moment in our company history.
As we look to the future of Oliver’s and our commitment to
serving Sonoma County, what can be more local than being
About Oliver’s Market
Established in 1988, Oliver’s Market is an employee-owned,
independent grocer serving Sonoma County, California from four
locations in Santa Rosa (2), Cotati and Windsor. Oliver’s
Markets strive to offer customers the finest selection of
natural, conventional, and specialty products. This mission
begins with a commitment to support the community through
hundreds of local partners including farmers and producers of
food, beverage, and wellness products. Oliver’s carries over
6,000 locally produced products, which account for 26% of sales
annually. A member of the Sonoma County GoLocal Cooperative,
Oliver’s received “Green Business Certification” from the
Sonoma County Green Business Program (2011) and a “Best
Practice Award” from the Business Environment Alliance (2007).
In 2016, Oliver’s was named one of the “Best Places to Work in
the North Bay” by North Bay Business Journal, and was the
featured Store of the Month in the December 2016 issue of
Progressive Grocer Independent magazine. Additionally, Oliver’s
earned the 2017 Progressive Grocer Outstanding Independent
Award in the multi-store category and received the “Inclusive
Employer Award” from Down Syndrome Association North Bay.
Oliver’s Market became an Employee Owned Company (ESOP) and a
Social Purpose Corporation in 2017. Learn more at www.oliversmarket.com.
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SOURCE: Oliver’s Market
Sara Cummings, 707-284-2017 x1 (Office)
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