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EDER FLAG BECOMES EMPLOYEE-OWNED COMPANY
Local company announces ESOP as culmination of founder’ s legacy
MILWAUKEE – Sept. 2, 2016 – Eder Flag announced today that it has initiated an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP), making the Oak Creek-based company 100 percent employee owned.
Eder Flag has 170 employees and is the largest manufacturer of flags and flagpoles in the U.S. The company services more than 5,000 customers and sells over 20,000 different products. Production operations are located in Oak Creek, and a distribution center is located in the Orlando, Fla. area.
The company traces it roots back more than 100 years when it was launched in 1887 by seven brothers from the Eder Family and focused on making pillows, felt pennants, rag dolls and hunting jackets. The flag-making business was launched and incorporated in 1903.
As time went on, Eder Flag added to its product line, providing many different types of flags, flagpoles and accessories.
Son of one of the seven founding brothers, Eugene Eder, acquired the company in 1957 and served as its leader for more than 50 years. Mr. Eder enrolled in the U.S. Navy and served during World War II and earned his law degree from the University of Wisconsin- Madison after the war.
Mr. Eder was always committed to growing his company here in the Milwaukee area and provided employment to hundreds of employees through the years. He was always loyal to his employees and credited them for the company’s growth. It was his idea that one day the company would become an employee-owned entity, securing its local headquarters and commitment to employees.
“This is Mr. Eder’s legacy. The employees at Eder Flag were an extension of his family and becoming an employee-owned company creates a legacy that reflects his commitment to maintain local ownership and keep the company in the Milwaukee area,” said Jodi Goglio, chief operations officer at Eder Flag.
There were different options available to pursue regarding the company’s future ownership, Goglio said. Those included selling to a competitor or to a private equity group. Both of those options raised serious concerns, though, about where the company would be headquartered and whether local employment would be negatively impacted, she said.
The ESOP does not affect the operations of the company, and management will continue to run daily operations of the company. Goglio will continue as chief operations officer, while Timothy Ksobiech, will serve as the company’s chief financial officer.
“We’re thrilled to be able to honor Mr. Eder’s legacy, and to make this an employee- owned company,” Ksobiech said. “As the company continues to grow, our employees will reap the rewards directly.”
An Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) is a federally regulated retirement plan that invests in the stock of an employer on behalf of its employees. Under the plan, eligible employees will earn shares of Eder Flag stock over time. Click here for a visual guide to employee ownership from the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO).
ABOUT EDER FLAG
Eder Flag is the nation’s largest producer of flags, flagpoles and related accessories. It is focused on customer service and making quality, craftsmanship and durability paramount values within the company. Originally launched as Eder Manufacturing Co. in 1887 by seven Eder brothers, it was acquired by Eugene Eder in 1957. He served as the company’s leader for 50 years. The company services more than 5,000 customers and sells over 20,000 different products. Production operations are located in Oak Creek, and a distribution center is located in the Orlando, Fla. area. For more information, visit www.Ederflag.com.