Employee Ownership: A Unique Exit Strategy

ESOP Advisory

Prairie Capital Advisors is a nationally recognized advisor to owners of middle-market companies and ESOP fiduciaries considering an ESOP exit strategy. Prairie's professionals are very active in ESOP-focused organizations including The ESOP Association, the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO), Certified EO, Employee Ownership Expansion Network (EOX), Employee-Owned S Corporations of America (ESCA).


We advise business owners through the ESOP sale process

We Work for You

As a business owner, selling your company to an ESOP should be treated with the same precision as selling to a third party buyer. A well executed process is crucial

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We help trustees / fiduciaries understand the valuation, financial fairness, and benefit impacts of an ESOP transaction

We are a Trusted Advisor

We help trustees / fiduciaries understand the valuation, financial fairness, and benefit impacts of an ESOP transaction

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We provide valuation services for annual ESOP administration

A Transparent Approach

We are a nationally recognized leader in providing trustees / fiduciaries valuation services for annual ESOP administration

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We understand fiduciary challenges when running an M&A process

Navigating a Complex Landscape

Selling an ESOP-owned company to a strategic buyer or financial sponsor takes a unique blend of capital markets expertise and a thorough understanding of ERISA fiduciary procedures

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ESOP Sustainability

We help you understand the long term implications of your ESOP policy decisions

Long-term Vision Required

We help trustees, board of directors, and management teams understand the long-term impacts of ESOP policy decisions. We provide a decision making tool to promote long-term sustainability

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Mature ESOP Consulting

We consult with boards of directors, fiduciaries and management teams to help navigate each phase of their ESOP strategy

Strategic Consulting

We will provide Mature ESOP Consulting Services on various board matters.

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An employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) is a unique strategy for business owners seeking liquidity. Using an ESOP strategy allows the business owner to sell a fractional amount or the entire business to the employees. Eligible employees will be allocated common stock over a period of time on a non-discriminatory basis. ESOPs are typically funded and sponsored by the company. In other words, the employees pay nothing for the shares other than time and dedication to the company.

ESOPs have 3 Primary Traits


Liquidity Strategy

  • Owners can sell a fractional amount or the entire company to an ESOP
  • It’s a more controllable and friendly process compared to a third party sale
  • Provides continuity of corporate culture and company legacy


Tax Efficiency

  • Debt incurred by transaction is repaid with pre-tax dollars
  • 100% ESOP-owned S-Corporation does not pay taxes
  • Capital gains deferral on C-Corporation transactions if certain criteria is met


Retirement Plan

  • The ESOP is an ERISA protected retirement plan
  • Value within participants account grow tax deferred
  • Company is responsible for repurchase of all stock when employees leave


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Middle - Market Focus

Middle - Market Focus

Prairie Capital Advisors is dedicated to serving the investment banking and financial advisory needs of middle - market business owners

Ownership Transition

Ownership Transition

A successful transition needs a well-thought- out strategy. We will help define, shape, and implement a plan that meets your short-term and long-term objectives

Corporate Growth

Corporate Growth

Build or buy? It could be both. Prairie Capital Advisor’s strong relationships with debt and equity capital sources will help you realize your corporate growth strategies

Business Sustainability

Business Sustainability

Sustainability requires strategies that grow the enterprise and minimize risks. Prairie advises companies on strategies that result in long-term shareholder value