There’s probably a lot that you know about beer and the brewing process. And there’s probably a lot that you don’t know about the people behind what it takes to create some of your favorite liquid. Here at Mass. Bay we’re proud to say that we’re Employee Owned. So what does that ACTUALLY mean? We tend to brush over it when we’re talking about the details, but in fact, those details are pretty important.
In short, when a company becomes employee owned it means that every person who works full-time at Mass. Bay owns a piece of the company without having to invest their own money to purchase stock. Our Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) was established in July of 2014, when rather than joining the crowd that every week seemed to be selling out to industrial brewers or private equity, we decided to double-down on remaining independent. Each year, additional shares get allocated to individual ESOP accounts based on repayment of the loan we had to take out to make all this happen. So what does that mean for us?
It means that we’re all invested. Literally and figuratively. Each of us here at Mass. Bay is invested in the success of our company. We want to see our products succeed and our customers have positive experiences when they try our beer or enjoy a pretzel in the Harpoon Beer Hall. The bottom line? The ESOP is a great milestone in helping Harpoon Brewery to stay independent and dedicated to our mission: brewing great beer and sharing unforgettable beer drinking experiences.
The playing field has changed in the game of beer and as a company we are eager to take on those challenges. As employee owners, we regularly discussed the realities of the industry and our performance. These conversations have not always been positive, but we have made a great deal of progress in reinvigorating our brands, especially Harpoon IPA. As we head towards the fifth anniversary of employee ownership, we are celebrating a lot of special moments in the rich history of our pioneering craft brewery. Each person that walks the halls of Mass. Bay has something to do with the beer that you order at your favorite bar or pick up at your local package store. You can be sure that every can you crack is made with a great attention to detail. We do own the place, after all.