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Press Release

Fieldfisher Partner recognised with ASLE international Employee Ownership award

25/11/2021
Graeme Nuttall OBE, Partner in Fieldfisher's Tax and Restructuring practice, has been recognised for his role in defending and promoting the social economy. The 'Txemi Cantera' International Social Economy Award was awarded for his fostering, and advocacy of, Employee Ownership in the UK, having produced this preeminent roadmap for the ownership model.
 
Awarded by ASLE, the business association of employee-owned and investee companies in the Basque Country, the 'Txemi Cantera' award acknowledges Graeme's contribution to the trend towards Employee Ownership in the UK, currently home to over 750 employee owned businesses, and beyond, with his work credited by both the USA's National Centre for Employee Ownership, and Employee Ownership Australia as an influence.
 
In 2012, as an independent advisor, and at the request of the UK government, Graeme penned the ‘Nuttall Review of Employee Ownership’ on the barriers to promoting this business ownership structure. The UK Government used the Nuttall Review's 28 recommendations as its agenda to break down the barriers to employee ownership and, in particular, to support employee ownership trusts as a business succession solution.
 
Graeme's work as part of Fieldfisher's leading Employee Ownership practice has helped it to support over 1,000s of employees to become owners, averaging one transaction a month over the last year.
 
Recognising the crucial role of cooperation in the international Employee Ownership community, Graeme comments:
 
"Thank you very much to ASLE for awarding me the Txemi Cantera International Social Economy Prize. It is a big honour to be recognised for my contribution to upholding the values that define employee-owned companies, such as participation, democracy and solidarity, and for me to join the list of well-known people who have been honoured in this way.
 
"It is very important that employee ownership organisations around the world share ideas and good practice, so that we may learn from one another and build stronger, better ways of promoting and maintaining employee ownership.  By awarding an international prize ASLE celebrates this global co-operation."
 
Peers and colleagues from across the international Employee Ownership community shared the following remarks:
 
Ann Tyler, Chair of Ownership at Work, independent UK think tank promoting better understanding of the impact of employee ownership, said:
 
“From policymakers to trades unions, standard setters and academics, the hunt is on for practical solutions to address global economic inequity. Sharing ownership and participation with employees provides a fast-track to tackling wealth inequality and improving the lives of individuals and communities. We applaud ASLE’s recognition of the outstanding work of Graeme Nuttall as a forthright and long-standing advocate for employee ownership (EO). His success in driving international recognition of EO and mobilising the global research community directly supports Ownership at Work’s mission to promote the model as a social and economic enabler.”
 
Loren Rodgers, Executive Director of the US National Center for Employee Ownership, said:
 
"Employee ownership is not just a better way to organize a business, it is a community, and ASLE has long led the world in recognizing the international nature of this community. Even beyond its own ceaseless advocacy and creativity, ASLE's recognition of Graeme Nuttall OBE for the 2021 Txemi Cantera Prize is one more step toward a globally aware employee ownership movement".
 
Andrew Clements, a legal consultant at KWM who has been working with Graeme on developing Employee Ownership Trusts for Australian businesses, and is Chair of Employee Ownership Australia says:
 
“There has been significant interest from small businesses following our work with Graeme Nuttall in relation to Employee Ownership Trusts (EOT). It is a model which is regarded as providing a very effective tool for employee ownership without the complexities of allocated employee share plans. We look forward to seeing the widespread adoption of the EOT business model in Australia as a succession solution for private company owners”.

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