Barkley, which has been employee owned for more than two decades has been bought back by the Kanas City-based agency’s leadership team. Terms weren’t disclosed.
The agency had been employee owned since launching an Employee Stock Ownership Plan in 1997.
One of the reasons for transaction, per the agency, was that a significant percentage of the stock was held by former employees.
“This helps us preserve our strong culture and puts us in a great position to continue attracting and retaining the best talent in the industry,” stated CEO Jeff King. Going forward, the agency said, managers who acquire shares in the firm will be required to sell the stake back to the agency if they decide to leave.
The agency said the outstanding shares were acquired at an “all time high valuation” but decline to state what that valuation was.
“The ESOP was the right tool for the company to grow during the last 22 years,” said Dan Fromm, president & Chief Operating Officer. “This new structure will be a catalyst for maintaining the entrepreneurial spirit that has always been at our core.”
The agency’s clients Taco Johns, DQ and Winnebago.