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Bliffert Lumber and Hardware announced the partial sale of the company to its employees via an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESPOs) representing the Bliffert employees.

ESOPs are qualified retirement plans that buy, hold, and sell company stock for the benefit of the employees, providing an ownership stake in the company. ESOPs are the only retirement plan allowed to borrow money to purchase stock and are generally funded by only the company. Selling part or all of a business to an ESOP enables a business owner to sell to a built-in buyer in as little as 90 days at their full fair market value.

According to company vice president Eli Bliffert, the sale is a way to reward employees for their contributions to Bliffert Lumber and Hardware’s success and to ensure its long-term viability.

“I am a firm believer that we are all in it together,” Bliffert said in a prepared statement. “The ESOP is the best way to ensure this.”

Bliffert Lumber and Hardware has served contractors and homeowners in southeastern Wisconsin for over 115 years.

“Now in our 5th generation of Bliffert family ownership, we are proud to be family-owned and operated and make sure that the personal service shows at each of our eight locations,” Bliffert said.