Employee groups of some companies may find it beneficial to buyout the companies for which they work. For example, Republic Container, a subsidiary of LTV Steel, led by their local union, purchased their company from its parent using an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) that was structured on a one-vote-per-person basis, similar to a co-op. Due to this shift in ownership, the employee owners were successful in preserving good jobs in West Virginia for 15 years beyond the time that LTV sought to liquidated it. Read their full case study. Other examples of Olson's assistance to employees wishing to buy their employers' businesses include: MBC Ventures, Inc., Franklin Forge, and North Coast Brass.
Deborah Olson pioneered the “employee buyout association” as a structure that provides hourly workers, managers and local supporters a simple and clear structure for organizing their purchase effort before they have all the information and resources they need to form the company. It is a vehicle they can use to raise funds for feasibility studies, business plans and preliminary legal work to make a purchase offer and negotiate agreements with potential management, equity and lending partners. Olson provides educational materials to guide such groups through the process of creating a feasibility study.