Nuttall One Year On & Call for Evidence on Perpetuity Launched

Today saw the launch of the ‘Nuttall Review One Year On’ Report, outlining progress made by Government, professional advisers and the employee owned sector on the recommendations within the Nuttall Review of Employee Ownership, published last July.

In partnership with the City of London Corporation, and the Department for Business, Industry and Skills the EOA co-hosted a well-attended launch event in London’s financial district.

Business Minister Jo Swinson MP introduced the report and chaired an hour long meeting with contributions from Nuttall Review author Graeme Nuttall, EOA CEO Iain Hasdell and a panel of businesses who each developed employee ownership within their companies during the period of the Review.

Tech start-up Gamevy explained that they used employee ownership to attract talented staff in a competitive marketplace, whilst Mary Knowles Homecare see their employee ownership model as a way of empowering carers and staff who are traditionally not involved in decision making in their sector. Training and education providers Aspire Sussex outlined the difference employee ownership meant to them in terms of the engagement of their staff team, whilst Union Industries explained that they are halfway through transitioning from private to employee ownership, seeing it as a way of developing succession and transition from within the staff team, and preserving the business’s  future and legacy.

Additional highlights included the launch of a “Call for Evidence” on the restrictions around the perpetuity of Employee Benefit Trusts in the UK, and the re-launch of the Employee Ownership Index, now endorsed by the London Stock Exchange whose methodology will further strengthen the evidence it provides of the increased productivity of employee owned firms.

The EOA warmly welcome the recognition that Government is giving to the importance of employee ownership. Employee owned businesses contribute around £30bn to the UK economy each year and are an important and growing part of the emerging economic growth.

As the original advocates of the Nuttall Review, it is pleasing to see that work has started on most of the recommendations and that some have been implemented in full. The One Year On report also helpfully shines a light on other progress, such as the creation of a UK Employee Ownership Day as an annual event, that has been achieved in addition to but separate from the Nuttall recommendations.

Whilst we continue to applaud the enthusiasm of a number of key ministers and officials in supporting the employee ownership agenda, the picture is of modest incremental steps forward. The pace and scale of change over the next year will need to be significantly better if the EOA’s widely endorsed target of 10% of GDP being delivered by employee owned businesses is to be achieved.

We will continue to work closely with Ministers and officials to promote employee ownership and will be responding formally to the new Call for Evidence – please do let us know your comments and we will consider them in the EOA response.

You can see some interview highlights from the day, courtesy of Co-Operative News, here: