The Davey Tree Expert Co. of Kent is the fifth-largest 100 percent employee-owned company in the United States in the 2013 rankings from the National Center for Employee Ownership.
The rankings are based on number of employees; Davey has more than 7,000 throughout North America, including about 500 in Northeast Ohio.
The company formed an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) in 1979, nearly 100 years after the tree, shrub and lawn-care business was founded by John Davey in 1880.
Karl Warnke, Davey’s chairman, president and CEO, said in a prepared statement that employee ownership encourages Davey to be “more innovative, collaborative and customer-focused.”
Davey has been on a growth spurt for several years. It has acquired 15 businesses, big and small, in the past five years. The company reported record revenues of $680 million for 2012, up from $646 million for 2011.
The annual National Center for Employee Ownership ranking includes the nation’s largest companies that are at least 50 percent owned by an Employee Stock Ownership Plan or other broad-based employee-ownership plan.
Davey ranks 18th among all companies with at least 50 percent employee ownership.
Companies on the list employ more than 673,000 people. The smallest company on the list has 1,100 employees. Publix Supermarkets of Lakeland, Fla., the largest company on this year’s list, has 159,000 employees.
The full Employee Ownership 100 list can be found online at the National Center for Employee Ownership’s website at www.nceo.org.
Katie Byard can be reached at 330-996-3781 or email@example.com