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Press Release

Fieldfisher celebrates Employee Ownership Day 2015

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United Kingdom

Fieldfisher is celebrating EO Day. We are joining politicians, professionals, academics, sector bodies and employee owned companies and their employees to celebrate another year of great achievements.

Fieldfisher is celebrating EO Day.  We are joining politicians, professionals and professional bodies, academics, sector bodies and employee owned companies and their employees to celebrate another year of great achievements.

The Nuttall Review of Employee Ownership set an agenda for promoting UK employee ownership that gathered wide-ranging support for this business model.  The Government supported the Employee Ownership Association (EOA) on the creation of EO Day, as a day for all supporters of "EO" to explain how employee ownership combines better business outcomes with improved employee well-being.

Fieldfisher has taken a key role in two new EO Day 2015 publications.  We are also hosting a roundtable discussion with industry experts to explore the themes of employee ownership, better performance and good management, and Fieldfisher has participated in other events in the build-up to EO Day.

New research and guidance

EO Day 2015 sees the publication of:

This unique research into decision-making in employee trust owned companies is published by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), and authored by Professor Roger Steare, Pavlos Pavlos Stampoulidis and Peter Neville Lewis. 

Fieldfisher partner, Graeme Nuttall OBE, worked with the authors and the CMI on this research project.  This is the first research to focus wholly on this employee ownership model and the findings are impressive.  The survey found that 94% agree that being employee owned positively affects people’s commitment to the organisation, while 86% agreed it improves their ability to attract new staff. 90% said it improves overall performance, while almost four in five (79%) said that it encourages longer-term decision-making. 

Graeme Nuttall OBE, Partner said:

“Becoming employee owned doesn’t have to be complicated and it has become more attractive thanks to tax changes introduced in 2014. Existing research shows how employee ownership helps deliver better business performance and improved employee well-being. This ground-breaking CMI-MoralDNA research helps us understand why, through highlighting the positive impact of the democratic management styles typically found in employee owned companies."

For further information please see the CMI's press release dated 3 July 2015 Democratic management driving ethics and engagement in employee owned companies.

  • Employee ownership in our public services – making it happen

Fieldfisher Partner, Neil Palmer has teamed up with partners, Prospects and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) to co-author this new EOA guide on employee ownership, which has been designed specifically for public sector organisations.

Neil Palmer said:

"Fieldfisher has worked with a number of pathfinders that have shown how moving to employee ownership succeeds in engaging staff to deliver better public services. We are delighted to contribute to this new guide, which will help all those contemplating this change. Public service spin-outs are a growing part of the EO sector, and this guide will maintain this momentum."

For further information please see the EOA's press release dated 3 July 2015 EOA launches new guide on employee ownership in public services.

EO Day Riverbank House roundtable on employee ownership, better performance and good management – how they interact.

The EO Day Riverbank House roundtable speakers include:

  • Patrick Woodman, Head of External Affairs at CMI, and Professor Roger Steare, Corporate Philosopher in residence at Cass Business School on the MoralDNATM of employee owned companies,
  • Professor Vlatka Hlupic, University of Westminster author of 'The Management Shift - How to Harness the Power of People and Transform Your Organization for Sustainable Success' on how the "Big Shift" should be easier and more natural for employee owned organisations, and
  • Richard Marr, Chief Operating Officer of Eaga Trust on its perspective on employee ownership.

Representatives from 3BM, Arup, the Chartered Banker Institute, Ernst & Young, Kellogg College, University of Oxford, Make Architects, Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design and others will take part in the roundtable discussion.

Build-up to EO Day

In the build-up to EO Day:

  • Graeme Nuttall OBE joined MPs, the IPPR and IPA-Involve, in a Co-Operative Party roundtable in Westminster on 1 July 2015 to mark Co-Operatives Fortnight and EO Day.  The roundtable chaired and hosted by Labour and Co-operative MP Jonathan Reynolds discussed how higher levels of employee ownership can contribute to increasing British productivity and growing the economy
  • Graeme Nuttall OBE encouraged professionals and company owners to consider the employee-ownership trust (EOT) model as a business succession solution at a 1 July 2015 ifs Proshare and Global Shares training event.  He explained the new tax exemptions for EOTs introduced as a result of the findings of the Nuttall Review
  • Members of the Fieldfisher Employee Ownership and Mutuals team presented a review of recent employee buy-outs on 2 July 2015 to colleagues to build greater awareness of EO as an ownership model.  Neil Palmer and Director Tom Martin showcased our work for E.A. Gibson Shipbrokers and others and Jennifer Martin provided an overview of the new capital gains tax exemption for qualifying disposals to EOTs, and
  • We hosted an EOA South East Network event at Riverbank House on the eve of EO Day.  This well attended enthusiastic event had a special focus on employee engagement in EO companies.  Senior Associate, Jennifer Martin provided an overview of achievements of the EO sector in the three years since the publication of the Nuttall Review and suggested that the next priority for the sector should be a focus on maximising the employee engagement benefits of EO .  Jeremy Gadd, founder of J Gadd Associates repeated part of the successful employee engagement workshop held last month at Riverbank for employee owned companies.

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