Stellantis employees in Italy and France take group shares worth $71 million

MILAN (Reuters) – Stellantis workers in Italy and France subscribed for 4.4 million of the carmaker’s shares worth 65 million euros ($71.4 million) under a corporate scheme to encourage them to become investors, the company said on Thursday.

The owner of brands including Fiat, Peugeot and Citroen earlier this year launched a plan offering over 85,000 employees in the two countries preferential conditions to buy shares in a bid to incentive performance as well as help them with cost of living pressures.

Stellantis said the plan was expected to be extended to an additional 242,000 eligible employees in 18 countries next year including the United States and Germany, before the rest of the world in 2025.

Chief HR & Transformation Officer Xavier Chéreau said the success of the scheme showed employees’ confidence in the group’s sustainable future.

“Our ambition is to ensure that as many of our valuable employees as possible can also become Stellantis shareholders in the near future,” he said. The scheme should be available next year to 55,000 Stellantis staff in the U.S. and 14,000 in Germany.

Initially open to around 43,000 people in Italy and 42,000 in France, the programme was launched between Nov. 13-30.

Employees invested a total of 47 million euros which was boosted by a 18 million euro contribution by the company, Stellantis said.

It said 22% of eligible employees subscribed for the shares, with an average individual investment of around 2,470 euros.

In France, 31% of eligible Stellantis employees joined the scheme, while 13% did in Italy, where this was the first-ever such program offered to former Fiat Chrysler staff in the country.

Employees subscribed for the shares at 14.52 euros each, a 20% discounted price, for an amount worth up to 25% of their current annual salary. The company added to the sum invested by each employee with a contribution of up to 1,000 euros.

Following the first stage of the plan, employees now hold 1.8% of the group’s share capital, with a mid-term target to bring this share up to 5%, Chéreau said.Stellantis was formed in early 2021 through the merger of Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot maker PSA.

($1 = 0.9108 euros)

(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari in Milan and Gilles Guillaume in Paris; Editing by Keith Weir)