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Awards

 

2021 ESOP STARS 

There are certain years which we all come to remember. 1066 was the year when the Normans invaded us. 1666 was the date when the great fire destroyed the city of London. 1945 saw the end of the Second World War.

There is no doubt that for most of us the year 2021 will soon join those dates we can never forget. It was the year when all our lives were changed, often personally as well as our business lives. And that is why for this year only these awards have been differently judged and take a different format.

Normally we are guided by an expert panel of people who from their experience can judge the ingenuity and skills of employee share plans. In 2021 all plans were affected by the pandemic and we decided to look in preference at how companies achieved success in adaptation to the temporary new world.

And so for this year, Esop Centre founder, Malcolm Hurlston CBE, guided by Centre colleagues, Fred Hackworth, the editor of newspad and Juliet Wigzell, manager of the Centre, exceptionally, turned our awards into Esop Stars.

The Centre is grateful to all who submitted entries.

In addition to the stars for entries received, Mr Hurlston made special awards to two people on the world scale who have given outstanding examples for the way forward.

The first award was to the chairman of the Chinese company Tencent, Pony Ma. He not only installed share schemes in the company for all employees but in addition gave equity to all employees from his personal holding. Malcolm will be sending his award to the China Development Centre in Shenzhen.

The second special award went to John Menke who was a colleague of Louis Kelso who created the Esop in California.

Accepting his Esop Star, John said that he was honoured to accept the award, and that he felt blessed to have been involved in Esops from the beginning. He told how Esops evolved from a pet project of Louis Kelso, to the two of them being able to work with Congress to draft the Esop provisions – nearly 50 years ago – to seeing the enormous economic and social consequences of Esops in the US and around the world.

He added that it is very pleasing to see the concept is still growing and expanding, as witnessed by the recent announcement that 50-60 private equity firms have embarked on a new project to spend $20billion over the next decade, to implement Esops in private equity owned companies, where Esops have yet to play a significant role.

He hopes Esops will become five, or even ten times bigger over the next 50 years.

 

 

The major awards – the Esop Stars – were awarded to:

Ceres Power

In recognition that the Ceres Sharesave 2021 plan showed rare success in adaption to the covid year, in reference to its effective communications of the plan to a multi-national workforce.

Kindred Group

In recognition that the K2 AESP plan showed rare success in adaption to the covid year, referring to the plan’s international and inclusive reach.

Nigel Le Quesne

The CEO of JTC was awarded the Esop Star for outstanding company leader, in recognition of his effective promotion of all-employee equity with rare enthusiasm.

Winch Designs

In recognition that the Winch Employee Ownership Trust plan showed rare success in adaption to the covid year, referring to the success of the EOT, which owns 100 percent of the company on behalf of all 140 employees.

Wise plc

In recognition that the Wise All-Employee Global Long-Term Incentive Plan was commended for its inclusive equity in a covid world.

 

 

Previous winners

2020

Best all-employee international share plan*
* Participants in at least three countries.
winner: BAE Systems
highly commended: BT
special commendation: Gamesys
special commendation: LPKF Laser & Electronics

Best executive/managerial equity reward plan (more than 100 employees)
winner: Imperial Brands

Best share plan communications
winner: Marks & Spencer
highly commended: Sky

Best use of technology, AI or behavioural science in employee share plans
winner: BT

Best share plan adaption to the Covid crisis
winner: Daily Mail & General Trust

Outstanding company leader (for chairman or ceo personally associated with company plans)
winner: Liv Garfield ceo of Severn Trent

Company whose employee share ownership impacts most on company success
Winner – Siemens Energy

2019

Best all-employee international share plan*
* Participants in at least three countries.
winner: Reckitt Benckiser
highly commended: Airbus

Best share plan communications
winner: easyJet
highly commended: Tesco
commended: Mitie

Best use of technology, AI or behavioural science in employee share plans
winner: Marks & Spencer

The most creative solutions
winner: Dixons Carphone

Best employee share plan practitioner
winner: Rm2 Partnership

2018

Best all-employee international share plan*
* Participants in at least three countries.
winner: easyJet

Best UK centred all-employee share plan 
ᶧParticipants in no more than two countries.
winner: Xtrac

Best share plan communications
winner: Micro Focus
highly commended: Non-Standard Finance

Best use of video communication
winner: Unilever

Best use of technology in employee share plans
winner: BP
highly commended: Paddy Power Betfair

The most creative solutions to employee cultural, jurisdictional or social diversity issues when launching international all-employee share plans
winner: BAE Systems

2017

Most Creative Solution
Winner: Google

Best all-employee international share plan *
* Participants in at least three countries.
Winner: Nokia
Highly commended: Sage Group

Best all-employee share plan
Participants in no more than two countries.
Winner: Valero

Best share plan communications
Winner: Telefónica
Highly commended: Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd

Best use of video communications
Winner: Amadeus IT Group

2016

Best all-employee share plan in a company with more than 1,500 employees
Winner: Computershare
Highly commended: Just Eat

Best all-employee share plan in a company with fewer than 1,500 employees
Winner: Chess Ltd

Best international all-employee share plan
Winner: Nokia
Very highly commended: Rio Tinto

Best all-employee share plan communications
Winner: Aviva

Best financial education of employees
Winner: Henderson

2015

Best international all-employee share plan in a company with more than 1,500 employees in at least three countries
Winner: Amadeus IT Holding

Best all-employee share plan in a company with fewer than 1,500 employees
Commended: Henderson Global Investors
Winner: Abzena

Best all-employee share plan communications
Winner: Royal Dutch Shell

Best in financial education for employees
Henderson Global Investors

Best integration of an all-employee share plan into a wider programme of employee engagement
No award in 2015

Best use of video in share plan communications
Winner: Telefonica

Best employee equity intervention by a major company chairman or ceo
Sacha Romanovitch, ceo of Grant Thornton

2014

Best international all-employee share plan in a company with more than 1,500 employees in at least three countries
Winner: Shell

Best all-employee share plan in a company with fewer than 1,500 employees
Winner: Conviviality

Best all-employee share plan communications
Commended: BSkyB
Winner: Rio Tinto

Special Award
BT, for its £1.1bn ShareSave payout

2013

Best employee share ownership plan (more than 1,500 employees)
Winner: Edwards Group

Best employee share ownership plan (fewer than 1,500 employees)
Winner: Igas Energy

Best all-employee share plan communications
Commended: W M Morrison Supermarkets
Winner: Pearson

Esop Institute student of the year
Stuart Clarke of RBC cees

2012

Best employee share ownership plan for a company with over 1,500 employees
Commended: Diageo
Winner: Royal Dutch Shell

Best employee share ownership plan for companies with fewer than 1,500 employees
Commended: The London Stock Exchange
Highly Commended: Imagination Technologies Group
Winner: Henerson Global Investors

Best communications supporting an all-employee share plan
Commended: Whitbread Group
Highly Commended: Flybe Group
Winner: J Sainsbury

2011

Best employee share plan in a company with more than 1,500 employees
Commended: Pearson
Joint Winners: Barclays and Ericsson

Best employee share plan in a company with fewer than 1,500 employees
Highly Commended: Telecity
Winner: Innospec

2010

Best employee share ownership scheme (More than 1,500 employees)
Highly Commended: BT
Winner: Shell International

Esop Institute student of the year
Anne-Louise Flowers, formerly of Sanne Group

2009

Best international employee share plan
Highly Commended: Diageo and RSA Insurance Group
Winner: Serco Group

Best small company international employee share plan
Winner: Telecity Group

Esop Institute student of the year
Winner: Charlie Germain from Ogier

2008

Best international employee share ownership plan for smaller companies
Winner: Telecity

Best international employee share ownership plan for larger companies
Winner: RSA

Esop Institute student of the year
Kristopher Poulton of Deloitte