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Harley Offers Equity to Factory Workers

The company hopes it will help improve growth and profitability.

Motorcycle giant Harley-Davidson recently revealed details of its five-year strategy, which includes awarding equity grants to workers.

The program appears to be based on a similar one devised by KKR, the owner of Ingersoll-Rand.

At KKR, 20,000 non-management employees have been awarded more than $500 million worth of stock across eight industrial companies, according to Reuters.

KKR’s co-head of private equity Pete Stavros described industrial workers as typically having “low levels of income and low levels of engagement, but they are critical to your success.”

After meeting with Stavros, Harley’s CEO Jochen Zeitz unveiled that Harley, too, would award equity grants to 4,500 workers, including all hourly and factory workers.

The move will better align with the way executives are compensated, and Harley hopes it will help improve growth and profitability.

Harley has had a hard couple of years, with 2020 continuing to show a downward trend in motorcycle sales.

Harley hopes to make advancements in electrics, creating a new division for EVs that it hopes will allow the unit “to behave with the same agility and speed as a tech startup,” says Zeitz.

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