16 results for year: 2018


Summer speech turns up the heat on push for a more inclusive economy

ResPublica Director Phillip Blond urged the employee owned sector to set a challenging target to make sure its growth is significant rather than incremental, in an address to 150 members of the Employee Ownership Association at the House of Commons. In his speech Phillip said: "I am here among people from businesses that are empowered to innovate through their ownership stake in their business. "But if this sector is to grow, it’s not enough to ask for more tax incentives or things that will help just a few more business to widen their ownership, we must turn up the dial, we must set a significant target and drive hard towards it." The annual ...

EOA welcomes Riverford’s transition to employee ownership

The EOA welcomes Riverford’s transition to employee ownership which was announced on BBC Breakfast today (8 June 2018). With 74% of the business being held in an Employee Ownership Trust, 650 employees will now have a voice and stake in the outcome of the business. Founder of Riverford Guy Singh-Watson, who will retain 26% of the business, began Riverford Organic Farmers when he started delivering vegetables to 30 friends in Devon. Now with more regional farms, they deliver 47,000 boxes of veg a week to homes around the UK. On announcing that they were due to become employee owned Guy Singh-Watson said: “We believe employee ownership ...

EOA Bigger Thinking Series part 5: Supporting the Spinouts

Rethinking how to deliver public services and consideration of how new delivery channels will be viewed by the public is a priority for leadership in every public sector body across the UK. Whilst there is a growing acceptance by the majority of the public that the current models must evolve, the recent collapse of Carillion highlights a major issue for this evolution. The same ownership structures or levels of governance do not bind such privately owned outsourced providers delivering many of these important public sector contracts. This creates a significant risk that has materialised in examples such as Carillion where the organisation’s ...

Share your EO story now for a chance to win

If your employee owned culture is something to shout about then we’ve got the place to do it.   The EOA, with the support of sponsor Baxendale, has launched two new Awards as part of the  UK Employee Ownership Awards 2018.   These  Awards celebrate business excellence in employee owned businesses and the contribution the employee owned sector makes to the UK economy. There are 5 awards for businesses and individuals to apply or nominate for as a well as the Phillip Baxendale Fellowship Award which will is  decided upon by the Judges.   Recognising that it is the culture of employee owned businesses that empowers ...

Bigger Thinking Series Part 4: Growth and scale-up – Growing a Business that Goes the Distance

Growing a Business that Goes the Distance “Growth is never by mere chance; it is the result of forces working together.” James Penney, Founder of JC Penney In any market in any economy, one of the biggest challenges is the notion of ‘business growth’. With regular stories of the UK’s flat productivity and slow growth, nobody seems to have THE answer on how to kick start the UK’s economy especially during the great pause many businesses are experiencing as they try to unpick what Brexit might mean for them. A company’s approach to scaling up and expanding its efforts underpins not just the ambition of any given brand, but also ...

CEO blog: Employee ownership’s role in our ‘special relationship’

Whilst French President Emmanuel Macron may have attempted to steal the ‘special relationship’ label of the UK and USA during his recent visit, after speaking at the National Centre for Employee Ownership’s (NCEO) annual conference in Atlanta recently, I am confident of the UK’s hold over that label – at least where employee ownership is concerned. For during my trip, I was struck by the similarities between these seemingly different employee ownership worlds. Firstly, we share the same challenges. Whilst there are almost 7,000 firms in the US that would describe themselves as employee owned, there is still a significant lack of awareness ...

Standing ovation for pioneering tech entrepreneur Dame Stephanie

More than 130 people gathered for an inspirational Robert Oakeshott Lecture by tech entrepreneur and philanthropist Dame Stephanie Shirley CH. A rousing standing ovation followed Dame Stephanie’s personal account of her journey as a migrant child drawn to collective work “most likely because of a lack of extended family or long term neighbours”, pioneering new working practices that allowed women to go back to work after a career break, her long journey to employee ownership, being the mother to a severely autistic child and later a philanthropist. The annual lecture, which this year was hosted Cass Business School and supported by ...

Sawday’s transitions to hybrid employee ownership structure

Travel company, Sawday’s and Sawday’s Canopy & Stars, has announced a new and innovative ownership structure. The hybrid model, thought to be the first of its kind, sees the majority share, 52%, going to the employees of the Bristol based company, 24% to a newly established Sawday charitable Trust and 24% remaining in the family. After 25 years as a family owned company, founder Alastair Sawday was contemplating his ‘exit’ from Sawday’s and he felt selling, in the traditional sense, was not an option. After reading a book by David Erdal: Beyond the Corporation: Humanity Working about employee ownership he set about researching the ...

EO Day 2018 countdown launches

Today the EOA officially launches its 100 day countdown to EO Day 2018 which is on Friday June 29. Over the next 100 days the EOA will be working with employee owned business, those who support and advise employee owned businesses and those who support the case for having more employee ownership as part of the UK business mix to plan celebrations for EO Day 2018. EO Day is a national campaign which celebrates what employee ownership means to employee owners, businesses and the impact they have on their local economies and sees businesses holding staff events, inviting VIPs or other businesses for tours, holding awareness events and much ...

1,000 connections made on EOA online platform EO Hub

The EO Hub has seen more than 1,000 connections between its members with 32 discussions already started since it launched in January. As an EOA member you can join the EO Hub via the online platform or the app. You can now also be the news by adding your employee owned related stories to the EO Hub news section and a weekly digest has also been launched to keep you informed of the most popular discussions, along with who has recently joined the EO Hub – don’t forget to tick the box to receive it. Sign up or sign in

Oxford Designers & Illustrators transition to employee ownership

When Roger Noel took over the running of Oxford Designers & Illustrators Ltd, he wanted to make sure that the business would be sustainable for the future. With several changes of directors in previous years and payouts when they had left the business, General Manager Roger felt it was his duty to make sure that they wouldn’t find themselves in this position again. Transitioning to indirect employee ownership in 2017, the team of 12 employee owners who include designers, illustrators, typesetters and proofreaders, bring traditional standards to bear on their work, using modern technology and methods. Now approaching 50 years of provid...

Bigger Thinking Series Part 3 – Planning for success; planning for succession

It sounds incredible that successful UK companies, responsible for employing hundreds if not thousands of people may have business shelf lives that are wholly reliant upon either the existing directors living forever, or the business being sold, uprooted or asset stripped. Shockingly, this is the case for many businesses today. Without a strategy for succession of ownership, the jobs, profits and products of these companies will potentially simply cease to exist, or disappear According to Imperial College Business School, only 20 percent of UK family-owned businesses make it to the third generation. This is more alarming when considering that ...

Press release: Just call me Steve! Dame Stephanie CH to give 2018 Robert Oakeshott Lecture

A leading entrepreneur and champion of women’s rights will deliver the EOA’s 2018 Robert Oakeshott Lecture. After coming to the UK as a child refugee in 1939, Dame Stephanie Shirley went on to build a business in the IT industry that helped women to work part time in the technology sector. Adopting the name ‘Steve’ to help win contracts in the male dominated IT sector, she went on to be an outspoken champion of women's rights, as well as an ambassador for autism awareness, donating more than £67m to charity. After establishing her female-friendly software company in 1962 she broke new ground to take it into co-ownership, peaking at ...

Member news: Sopra Steria becomes Trustee member of the EOA

Sopra Steria and the Employee Ownership Association (EOA) are delighted to announce that Sopra Steria has become a Trustee member of the EOA in the UK. Employee share ownership has always formed a core part of Sopra Steria’s heritage and is seen by the company as a key driver for engaging employees, encouraging entrepreneurship and maintaining independence. At Group level around 7% of the share capital is owned by or managed for employees, with a further 22.6% held by founders, historic and current managers. The company frequently offers employee share programmes that are adopted enthusiastically by employees across the world. In the UK, ...

Bigger Thinking Series Part 2: Productivity and Performance Post-Brexit

2018 will be a year of change for UK businesses in so many ways; Brexit has seen to that. 2017 ended with news headlines of UK productivity lagging across a many markets. Now, in 2018, predictions regarding productivity levels, combined with the uncertainty of Brexit, are at times, as wild and varied as the process of exit is complicated. And whether you're forlorn about the grand exit, or delighted, the fact remains; the future success of the UK economy in a post-Brexit era will be heavily influenced by levels of productivity. The UK media has been focused on automation and investment in technology as the major routes to improve productivity ...

Assets don’t exist, only people

If business leaders genuinely believe that their people are their best ‘assets’ and make their brand so special, then why do so few employees get to input into management-level decisions? Why are most boardrooms made up of a tiny handful of people who do not even come close to representing the wider make-up of the workforce accurately? From recruitment adverts to marketing campaigns, time and time again, I see companies boasting about how ‘their people are their biggest asset’ and how much they are loved by the business leaders. But when you scratch beneath the surface, quite quickly you can see that the 'love' of the workforce rarely ...