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Local family-owned company the latest to shift to employee ownership model


Another Treasure Valley-based company is making the switch from several owners to many.

Commercial Tire, originally founded in 1968 in Downtown Boise, now headquartered in Meridian, is transitioning from family-owned to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan, or ESOP. That means employees at 45 locations across Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and Utah now make up the ownership of the company.

“It’s always been a major concern of mine…how do I position the company to be in the best place to take care of my family, the employees who helped us get here, and our loyal customers?” Founder and CEO of Commercial Tire Bob Schwenkfelder said. “Selling the company could create unwanted change and instability for the people we care about. This transition is about leaving a legacy for our employees and in our communities that will have a lasting, positive impact.”

[Boise firm decides to sell — to its employees]

Commercial Tire joins other Idaho businesses in adopting the ESOP model including Winco Foods, Lighthouse Foods, and Norco Inc. Just in the last few months, both Tates Rents and Drake Cooper announced they would shift to employee ownership.

According to Commercial Tire, shifting to an ESOP framework has been shown to improve job stability and business performance, which not only benefits employees, but customers and communities as well.

“We know this move will enhance our ability to recruit and retain great people—now employee-owners— to our growing company. In turn, the service we provide to our customers will only get even better,” Schwenkfelder adds. “As a historically family-run company, it feels like the real change we made is welcoming a whole lot of great people to the extended family.”

Disclosure: Commercial Tire is a BoiseDev advertiser, with ad placement coming from a third-party ad agency. It had no role in the selection or production of this story.

Gretchen Parsons - BoiseDev Managing Editor
Gretchen Parsons - BoiseDev Managing Editor
Gretchen Parsons is BoiseDev's managing editor. Contact her at [email protected].

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