Johnston Press employees are to share in the company’s record profits.
As part of a new share incentive scheme, staff will receive shares worth just under £300 later this month. Last week the company revealed it made an operating of profit of £160.6m on turnover of £491.8m in 2003.
To qualify, employees must have been with Johnston throughout 2003.
They can only cash in the shares after they have been with the company for three years.
Some 5,500 staff are understood to qualify for equal payouts totalling £1.5m. Finance director Stuart Patterson said: “We’ve put it in place to help employees share in the success of the company and encourage employee share ownership.”