Barkley buys back stock to double-down on independence

'This helps us preserve our strong culture and puts us in a great position to continue attracting and retaining the best talent in the industry.'

Barkley has bought back all of its stock in a bid to strengthen its independent stance. 

A management group led by its executive team now owns 100 percent of the Kansas City shop’s stock. It was purchased back through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan at an all-time high valuation. 

"This helps us preserve our strong culture and puts us in a great position to continue attracting and retaining the best talent in the industry," said CEO Jeff King. 

"This process helped us create the best possible conditions to continue driving growth and providing exceptional value to our clients."

Prior to this sale, a significant percentage of the stock was held by former employees who no longer work at Barkley. 

The shop, which recently snagged Planet Fitness from Hill Holliday, retained all of its current leadership team through this process.

Dan Fromm, president and COO, added: "The ESOP was the right tool for the company to grow during the last 22 years. This new structure will be a catalyst for maintaining the entrepreneurial spirit that has always been at our core."

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