Journal Register Co. Launches Its First-Ever Profit-Sharing Plan, Says Q1 EBITDA Exceeded Goal

By: Mark Fitzgerald

CEO John Paton unveiled Journal Register Co.’s first-ever profit-sharing plan Sunday, promising all employees a week’s pay if the company reaches $40 million in EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) for the year.

In his blog, Paton also disclosed that the now-privately held Journal Register Co. set a goal of $6 million in EBITDA for the first quarter and actually hit $8.2 million.

“To hit the pay out we have to hit our corporate financial goals,” Paton wrote. “And we can’t do that unless we all do our jobs. You also need to know our financial goals and so – again for the first time in our history – we are letting the employees know exactly what those goals are. And how we are tracking to those goals.”

All JRC employees, including union-represented workers, are eligible for a profit-sharing payout, Paton added – with one exception.

“There is, however, one group who will not be eligible to participate in the profit-sharing plan — senior executives,” he wrote. “Our senior corporate executives, including me, and our senior publishers, responsible for our clusters, are not eligible. Those folks, including me, already have a performance bonus component as part of their compensation. It’s enough already.”

Paton said employees will be updated on financial performance every quarter, with the profit-sharing payout based on the year-end audit completed around April 15. If EBITDA reaches at least $38 million but falls short of $40 million profit sharing will be paid out on a pro-rated basis.

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