OAUK was delighted to support GS Brown in their recent move to employee ownership.
Des and Mike Brown, owners of the prestigious Fife precision engineering company decided to transfer a majority shareholding in the family firm to the company’s 27 employees as part of their succession strategy.
Des Brown says “Ownership Associates ensured our transition to employee ownership went smoothly. We are very happy with the outcome and particularly appreciate the support provided in communications with employees. This ensured we start this new chapter with everyone on board, all working towards the future success of GS Brown”
The second-generation family business was set up in 1974 by George Brown. Utilising the latest machine tool technology, GS Brown is recognised as progressive company manufacturing high precision engineering components and assemblies, in medium to high volume, for the hydraulics, robotics, telecommunications and instrumentation sectors. The company operates with a state of the art ERP system that gives full transparency of production, costs and resource.
OAUK facilitated a series of meetings with employees to inform everyone of the family’s decision. The news was very well received. One employee said “It’s not what I expected to hear when I walked in but it sounds like a very good plan. This is a great company to work for, and it’s good to know that we’re here for the long term. “
Des Brown, Managing Director, G. S. Brown plans to remain as Managing Director for the medium term. Both brothers wanted the business to remain local. “The majority of our staff have been with us a very long time. We have our reputation and our customers because our staff do a very good job. A sale to an external buyer would have been too disruptive. By transferring to an Employee Trust we have a long term structure where we can continue as before, and maintain our relationships with customers and suppliers. “
Malcolm Dick, Production Manager, will be promoted to the Board of Directors as part of the company’s new structure. “This is a very far-sighted move by the Brown family. We have different generations of families working here. We have a very bright future and it’s now up to all of us to return Des and Mike’s loyalty by maintaining their high standards and making sure GS Brown is as successful as it can be.”
Fife Council and Scottish Enterprise provided grant support for elements of the transaction. Legal advice provided by Thorntons and accountancy support provided by EQ Chartered Accountants.