As reported in the group’s internal publication Wetherspoon’s News, £454m worth of bonuses and shares has been paid to workers since 2006.
While the company awarded bonuses, free shares and ‘share options’ to employees since the 1980s, the current scheme started in 1998 with a Government-approved free share scheme introduced in 2003.
Since its introduction, JDW has awarded 20.6m shares to employees, equating to about 16% of all shares in existence at present.
The business claimed the schemes give an extra incentive for workers to stay at JDW and revealed 11 employees have worked at JDW for more than three decades and 326 have been there for more than 20 years.
In addition, about 7.5% (3,049) have been JDW team members for more than 20 years and 3,049 have been there for over 10. Approximately a fifth (21.7% or 8,827) have been employed by the business for more than five years.
In the financial year ending July 2021, a period when pubs were closed for trading for much of it, while the company made a loss of £136m, it awarded £22.8m in bonuses and free shares with more than three quarters (79%) of employees receiving a bonus and/or shares during that time.
However, in years when pubs were open, this was more as in 2019, £46m was paid out and almost all (97%) of staff also received a bonus and/or free shares.
Sharing company success
The amount paid was up on 2018 figures, which showed £43m was awarded in bonuses and free shares.
Currently, about 37% (15,171) of the company’s 40,670 team members have been awarded free shares in the business.
The large majority of recipients (96%) were employees below board level with about 83% paid to staff working in the sites.
JDW chief executive John Hutson said: “People are vital to the success of the business. Our bonus and share schemes are a good way to share in the company’s success.”