Catering equipment firm transitions to employee ownership

Nuttall Flexeserve Zone

Industry shopfitting and counters specialist Alan Nuttall Ltd has become an employee-owned partnership following new legislation brought in by the government last year.

All employees at the firm, which has around 600 staff, are now partners in the business, with an Employee Ownership Trust holding the majority of shares in a set-up that famously mirrors that of John Lewis.

“I am delighted to realise my vision for the business,” said chairman Alan Nuttall. “I was inspired by the John Lewis model and saw this as an opportunity to protect the future of the company by providing long-term, secure ownership.”

According to the Dudley Express & Star, Mr Nuttall started the West Midlands business in 1966 with an investment of just £137. It is now one of the largest foodservice fit-out firms in the UK, counting the likes of Asda, Costa, Pret A Manger and Fortnum & Mason among its customer base.

The company hopes the move to an employee-owned partnership will encourage staff accountability and engagement, with workers receiving a share of profits.

Employee ownership is reported to be the fastest growing form of business ownership in the UK. Last week the Employee Owned Association launched a new guide for organisations exploring the model in a bid to facilitate the transition to employee ownership.

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