Tricore now in employee ownership

Tricore, an Aberdeen-based industrial drill bit engineering firm has become the latest company to move to employee ownership with support from Ownership Associates UK.

Tricore provide refurbishment for new and used roller cone drill bits which are used within the oil and gas, construction, and mining industries. The firm has refurbished thousands of units for North Sea drilling operations from its premises in Blackburn Industrial Estate, on the outskirts of Aberdeen.

Tricore was established in 1987 by Greg Henderson and Bill Bowie. Sadly, Greg passed away and Bill had to consider how best to structure the company for the future.  He was planning to retire, but a trade sale might be challenging in a depressed oil sector. More importantly, Bill was concerned about the stability of employment of the local workforce., several of whom had been with Tricore for more than 20 years.

Bill learned about the employee ownership option from his advisers AAB Accountants. They introduced Bill to Carole Leslie, who talked through how a sale to an EOT might work for Bill, the estate of Greg Henderson and for Tricore and its employees.  Once there was agreement to go ahead, Carole met with the employees to explain what employee ownership means.

Working with Sarah Winter and Campbell Clark of Blackadders, and the Corporate Finance team of AAB, Carole supported the company’s transition to employee ownership.

100% of the shareholding is now in an Employee Ownership Trust, which secures the future of the company for the long-term.  The transaction is funded from company profits. Bill is hoping to gradually reduce his time in the business, with Operations Manager, Wallace Hay taking over at the helm. There are plans to recruit more staff in the future.

Bill says, “This was the right move for Tricore.  The process was relatively straightforward and we very much appreciated the support from Ownership Associates.”