Leveraged ESOP

Although uncommon, leveraged ESOPs are typically used to concentrate the ownership, often to defend against a possible takeover. An ESOP is an employee stock ownership plan where employees own a piece of equity in the private company. Leveraged ESOPs are initiated by borrowing capital to capture a majority of the equity at one time. This equity can then be vested over time to employees. Leveraged ESOPs drastically alter both the capital structure of a private company (by increasing the liabilities), and the ownership concentration from the original owners/management to the employees.