REI Named to FORTUNE’s Best Places to Work List

Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI), announced today that it has again been honored by FORTUNE magazine as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work for in America."

Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI), the outdoor retailer regarded for its quality gear, staff expertise, progressive business practices, and community and environmental efforts, announced today that it has again been honored by FORTUNE magazine as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work for in America.” Ranked as number 34 in the 2008 list, REI has been recognized as part of the “100 Best” list for 11 consecutive years.

The company is one of 14 employers included every year since the magazine began compiling the list in 1998, and one of five companies included in two earlier book versions. Additionally, REI is one of six companies based in the state of Washington that made FORTUNE's list. The complete rankings can be viewed online at starting today, and will be part of the magazine's February issue available on newsstands on January 28.

Released annually, FORTUNE's “100 Best” list is based on an employee survey conducted by the Great Places to Work Institute, and corporate information submitted by each company regarding its culture, policies and benefits. Four hundred employees randomly received the “100 Best” survey which measured workplace pride, respect, credibility, fairness and camaraderie. Employee survey results are heavily weighted at two-thirds of the final score.

“With our employees' enthusiastic dedication to our customers, communities and each other, they create an environment that makes REI a rewarding place to work and an inspiring place to shop,” said Sally Jewell, REI president and CEO. “Our 10,000 employees are the heart of our commitment to increase outdoor recreation, engage children in nature and protect shared natural spaces.”

REI actively encourages community involvement and participation in human-powered recreation, and the company's work environment promotes camaraderie, open communication and the opportunity for internal advancement, while respecting and encouraging work/life balance. A generous benefits program is extended to employees, including:

• Healthcare benefits to full and part-time employees, including those who work less than 20 hours per week. Employees may enroll their spouse, life partner and children who live in the home with the employee
• Incentive pay directly tied to individual, divisional and company goals for all employees companywide
• Generous retirement plan in which the company contributes, regardless of employee contributions. REI has funded the retirement plan at 15 percent for 21 of last 22 years
• Deep discounts on gear and apparel, as well as free rentals. The REI employee discount is also extended to retired employees with 25 or more years of service
• Gear grants for employees embarking on a personal outdoor challenge
• Alternative transportation subsidies to encourage commuter reduction
• Financial and gear grants to community-based outdoor-focused clubs and non-profit organizations in which REI employees are involved, as well as team-building service projects where employees work together to enhance their favorite outdoor areas
• Paid sabbaticals
• Tuition reimbursement

REI is a national outdoor retail co-op dedicated to inspiring, educating and outfitting its members and the community for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship. Founded in 1938 by a group of Pacific Northwest mountaineers seeking quality equipment, REI operates retail stores nationwide, two online stores – and – and an adventure travel company, REI Adventures. REI offers products from all of the top brands for camping, climbing, cycling, fitness, hiking, paddling, snow sports and travel, including its own line of award-winning outdoor gear and apparel. While anyone may join or shop at REI, members pay a one-time $20 fee and receive a share in the company's profits through an annual member refund based on their purchases. As an active supporter of the communities in which it does business, REI is committed to promoting environmental stewardship and increasing access to outdoor recreation through education, volunteerism, gear donations and financial contributions.