The staff of office furniture and storage manufacturer Bisley now own 51% of the company.
Tony Brown, the owner of the South Wales-based firm, has established an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT), gifting the employees with 51% of the shares in the business. He has been working on the succession planning project for the past two and a half years in close collaboration with CEO Richard Costin.
Moving forward, 51% of Bisley will be indirectly owned by its approximately 500 global employees. Most of these are based in the UK, but there are also offices in Dubai, New York, Paris, Germany, the Netherlands and Ireland.
Brown began working at Bisley in 1960 and acquired the company from his father in 1970. At the time, Bisley had 45 staff members and annual sales of £370,000. Today, it generates annual revenue of around £70 million and exports its products to more than 75 countries.
The Bisley EOT will be managed by a group of trustees, including Costin. The CEO said: “It has been an honour working with Mr Brown, bringing this exciting change to galvanise and unite all of us at Bisley.
“Our staff across the world mean so much to us and it has been a pleasure to complete the EOT at such a challenging economic time. This important announcement provides reassurance to our staff, customers and suppliers and it allows our ethos, values and independence to continue to thrive, while allowing us all to share in the success and continue the incredible legacy that Mr Brown has set.”