Associate ownership at Hypertherm evolved from “doing the right thing.”
Hypertherm was founded in 1968 by Richard Couch, Jr., as a privately held company, mostly owned by the Couch family. In 2001, when Couch introduced the Hypertherm Associate Stock Ownership Plan, HSOP (a qualified ESOP), it was more than a strategy to fuel continuing growth; it evolved from “doing the right thing”. In 2004, the Global Stock Value Plan (GSVP) was established to extend ownership to Hypertherm’s international Associates.
Associate ownership at Hypertherm
- Creates an opportunity for all Associates to share in the wealth they help create
- Ensures a high correlation between greater Associate participation in process improvements and increased productivity towards the financial success of the company
- Helps Associates better understand the relationship between personal performance and company results
- Involves Associates in the business as “players,” not just spectators
As of January 2014, Hypertherm is 100% Associate-Owned. In essence, the HSOP is a form of retirement savings plan. Participants are vested after working three years of at least 1,000 hours. The longer an Associate remains a participant of the HSOP, the more their account balances can grow. Hypertherm donates company stock to eligible participants each year, based on each Associate’s compensation, which includes base pay, overtime and profit sharing.