Norco, Inc. has formed a new qualified retirement plan to benefit its employees. This plan, the Norco, Inc. Employee Stock Ownership Plan (the “ESOP”), is designed specifically to invest in the stock of Norco, Inc.
Norco will now provide a 35 percent stock benefit to its 1,200 employees through the new ESOP.
Norco now joins the ranks of thousands of privately-owned businesses nationwide that offer their employees a meaningful stake in the action. For Idaho-based companies, Norco will become the second-largest private employer to offer this type of benefit, preceded only by WinCo Foods, which has been a 100 percent ESOP-owned company for many years.
Norco was first established in 1948 by David Nordling. Larry Kissler acquired Norco from the Nordling family in 1968. In that year there were 16 employees at two branch operations - one in Boise and the other in Twin Falls, Idaho. Larry’s son Jim Kissler is Norco’s current CEO. Today, Norco still is headquartered in Boise, but has expanded with 1,200 employees working in 75 branch locations within seven states in the Northwest. Norco also owns and operates two air separation plants which produce oxygen, nitrogen, and argon gases.
“A meaningful benefit”
Norco President Ned Pontious commented on the recent news, “This is an extremely exciting time for our company. The willingness for Jim Kissler to offer this benefit to our employees is critical for our ongoing success. This will allow us to establish a meaningful benefit for retention, motivation, and recruitment of the key people we will need in the future. Larry Kissler always said the ‘People are the Key’ and once again Jim Kissler has reinforced that. When you can get everyone to think like owners in a company the potential for continued growth is limitless.”
To assist in the transaction, Norco engaged AmbroseAdvisors as its exclusive advisor. Ambrose provided financial and legal advice in evaluating, structuring, and implementing the transaction. They will continue to assist Norco in 2016 as the new structure becomes an integral part of Norco moving forward. The independent ESOP trustee engaged its own separate legal and financial advisors.