lewiston – A penny saved may be a penny earned, as the Farmers’ Almanac would no doubt advise, but Caleb Weatherbee’s publisher would rather share the wealth.

Geiger Bros. is doing just that. Its employees at its headquarters here as well as sales associates around the nation are sharing in $1.8 million of the company’s profits.

In all, says Geiger in a statement, 400 employees will divvy up nearly $900,000. Another $900,000 will be doled out to sales reps in the form of bonuses.

That’s up 40 percent over the amount of profit-sharing distributed to employees last year. On average, each employee received nearly 4 percent of the annual wages in the profit-sharing distribution.

That’s about $1,200 for someone who earns $30,000 annually at the plant.

Workers learned of the payout Friday during Geiger’s annual “fireside chat” assembly.

The company is encouraging its employees to invest the profit-sharing distribution in their retirement by taking advantage of Geiger’s 401(k) plan.

“Geiger has had a profit-sharing and bonus program in place since 1955. Sharing profits has been a part of our culture for over 50 years,” said Gene Geiger, president and chief executive officer, in announcing the distribution.

Laura Bosse, Geiger’s director of human resources said, “I continue to be so proud to be a part of Geiger, and so grateful for all of the opportunities that have come my way over the years. Thank you for continuing the tradition of giving back a share of the profits.”

The company says it enjoyed double-digit sales growth and earned an all-time record profit in 2005. Privately owned, Geiger didn’t divulge the amount of the profit.

Geiger is the largest privately held promotional products distributor in the nation. It operates 20 divisional offices across the United States and is affiliated with more than 400 independent sales representatives. The company has an international presence, with offices in Kent and London, England, and Hong Kong, China.

Geiger is also an internationally renowned manufacturer of calendars and planners, and the sole publisher of the world-famous Farmers’ Almanac.

Among the company’s most recent awards are the Margaret Chase Smith Level I and Level II awards (Maine’s Total Quality recognition based on Malcolm Baldridge Award criteria) and the Maine Cornerstone Award for businesses that contribute to the local and state economies, as well as to their communities.