CLERMONT-FERRAND, France (May 20, 2003) – The second phase of Group Michelin's employee shareholding plan has ended, with 69 percent of the firm's 113,000 employees worldwide opting to buy shares in the company.
On average, each subscriber applied for 30 shares, Michelin said, or 3.3 million in all, leaving 2.7 million of the shares set aside still available.
The 3.3 million shares represent about 2.4 percent of Michelin's publicly traded shares, a level Michelin said put it “in the upper echelons of the industrial sector, in terms of employee interest in company capital.”
Michelin's objective was to enable as many employees as possible to become shareholders. The two phases took place in 69 countries; the first phase, available to workers in 16 countries in North and South America, Europe, Africa and Asia, took place in April 2002 at a reference price of $38.50 per share, although the subscription offered discounts based on the number of shares bought.
The U.S. subscription price included a 20-percent discount off the reference price, the company said. Michelin matched the price of the first 10 shares purchased by 50 percent off the discounted price, putting the cost at $15.40 a share.
“The level of employee participation has exceeded our estimations,” the company's managing partners said in a prepared statement. “Despite the troubled geopolitical climate of the past months, the level of subscription shows that the majority of the company´s employees have recognized the attractiveness of the share offer, as well as our message of trust in them.”