Litehouse ,Inc., Sandpoint, Idaho, announced that effective Dec. 22, 2014, 100% of the company's stock was sold to its employees through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). The move continues the opportunity for all current and future employees to become owners of the sauce, dip, herb, cheese and salad dressing processor, which has been family owned for over 50 years. Litehouse first formed an ESOP plan in 2006, selling 30% of the company as a commitment to its employees and communities. The move to 100% ESOP ensures continued local ownership.
"We are incredibly proud of our company, and want our legacy to be shared with the talented and dedicated employees who have contributed to its growth,” says Doug Hawkins, chairman of the board of directors. “The move to 100% employee ownership allows every employee to be an owner and ensures the future success of Litehouse for generations to come.”
Doug and Edward Hawkins, founders of Litehouse, and Wendell Christoff, owner of Chadalee Farms, which merged with Lithouse in 1997, will continue their roles as active board members. In 2010, Jim Frank was named president and CEO of Litehouse, and will continue to lead the company.
"We are excited to have created this opportunity for our employees, and we are confident that the ESOP will make us an even stronger company," adds Frank. “The success of the Litehouse brand, and the move to a 100% employee-owned company is a strong reflection of our founders Guiding Principles: Faith, Stewardship, Integrity, Commitment to Excellence and Accountability. These principles continuing to guide us today.”