Travel and Transport, a 100% employee-owned company, has been named the 2015 ESOP Company of the Year by The ESOP Association. The award was presented to Travel and Transport on May 6th at the Association’s 38th Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. Jim Winterscheid, Vice President, Human Resources for Travel and Transport and the company’s ESOP Communication team, made up of non-management employee-owners, accepted the award.
The award recognizes companies that are strong supporters of ESOPs (Employee Stock Ownership Plans). There are approximately 10,000 ESOPs in place in the U.S., covering 10.3 million employees. The ESOP Association itself represents approximately 1,600 ESOP companies and is comprised of 17 regional chapters nationwide.
Every year, each regional chapter selects its ESOP company of the year and in turn, nominates that company to be considered for the national Company of the Year Award. In February of this year, the Iowa/Nebraska Chapter selected Travel and Transport as its Company of the Year, making Travel and Transport eligible for consideration as National ESOP Company of the Year. “This national recognition is an incredible honor for the employee-owners of Travel and Transport. Employee-ownership has been one of the significant drivers in the success and growth of our company since our plan was put into place in 1991. It is such a great feeling to know that as we prosper as a company, that benefit is shared with the employee-owners both financially and culturally,” stated Kevin O’Malley, Travel and Transport’s President and CEO.
The benefits of ownership are also passed on to Travel and Transport’s clients. “By empowering our employees, they have the opportunity to make decisions that positively impact our clients on a daily basis. As owners, we want to offer solutions that create value as well as strong, lasting partnerships,” stated O’Malley.
It is important that an employee-owned company educate their state’s Congressional Representatives on the importance of ESOPs to the economy and the positive results they can bring for job retention and growth. Travel and Transport makes yearly trips to Capitol Hill to meet with Nebraska’s Congressional Representatives. Independent studies show that ESOP companies are 25% more likely to stay in business; are four times less likely to lay off employees during a recession; and, on average, have retirement accounts 2.5 times larger than workers in non-employee-owned companies. (Source: http://www.esopinfo.org/infographics/)
Travel and Transport advocates employee-ownership by empowering their employees to think and act like an owner every day through participating in charitable projects, educational contests, annual shareholder meetings, potluck lunches, and celebrations during Employee Ownership Month in October. “These continuing education and engagement activities encourage our employee-owners to learn how they can be a direct part of shaping the success of the company,” added O’Malley.
About Travel and Transport: Founded in 1946, Travel and Transport, Inc. is one of the top 5 travel management companies in the U.S. specializing in corporate travel management, vacation travel, and group and meeting travel services. Travel and Transport, a 100% employee-owned company recognized for unparalleled service, integrity and travel industry knowledge, employs 1,300 people, has locations in 43 states and is headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska.
About The ESOP Association: The ESOP Association is the national trade association for companies with Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs) and the leading voice in America for employee-ownership. The core cause of The ESOP Association is the belief that employee-ownership will improve American competitiveness, increase productivity through greater employee participation, and strengthen our free enterprise economy.