Consultancy Curtins has handed over full ownership of the business to its employees, as it becomes the latest construction business to form an employee ownership trust (EOT).
The business previously had a share ownership scheme, under which staff owned 25% of the business. The scheme was first introduced in 2002.
To achieve the transition, members of Curtins’ board and other staff shareholders have transferred their shares to the EOT. Under the new structure, staff will be able to influence business decisions through an employee forum comprising 28 representatives from across the firm’s 14 offices.
Companies controlled by EOTs are also able to pay tax-free cash bonuses to their employees of up to £3,600 per employee per year.
The board of directors will still have responsibility for running the business and will be accountable to a trustee board, which will include two elected members of the employee forum. The employee trustee directors are Helene John, office manager in Curtins’ Cardiff office, and Stephen Beggs, director in Bristol.
Chief executive Rob Melling said the move was in line with the philosophy of Bill Curtin, who founded the business in 1960.
He said: “By implementing the transition now, at a time of bright prospects for Curtins, we believe that the stars have aligned to achieve key benefits for our people.
“While our staff have always been focused on delivering what our clients need from us, we believe that being part of the EOT will give our staff an even greater desire to achieve our company objectives, and serving clients is at the very heart of that.
“We genuinely believe that this is best for the business and our people. For those that don’t get it, my response is just wait and see.”