Shoosmiths advises Churchill on Employee Ownership Trust

LAW firm Shoosmiths has advised Churchill Group on becoming an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT).

Churchill Group, a leading group of expert businesses within facilities management industries, decided to take the move to become an EOT to ensure it remains true to its founding entrepreneurial ethos and core values, enabling it to grow and evolve for the long-term benefit of employees, customers and their communities.

The decision was taken by Churchill Group based on the multiple benefits to the employees and the opportunity for everyone in the company to benefit from the reward and to install responsible succession planning.

Paving the way for the new EOT, investment firm Soho Square Capital has also exited its investment in Churchill Group after three years, owing it the Group’s period of transformational and above-plan growth.

Churchill Group were advised by Shoosmiths partner Kiran Dhesi, senior associate Lawrence Renny and associate Molly Vandervell on corporate aspects, while banking aspects were advised by partner Anna Robson, and associate Jonny Adamson.

Kiran Dhesi, Shoosmiths’ partner said: “We were very pleased to have been instructed by Churchill Group to work on a project so important to the Group’s values and future. EOTs are becoming increasingly popular and over the last few years the firm has noticed an increase in businesses wishing to enter into these. 

“Given the complex nature of the advice we were delighted to advise the Group alongside Grant Thornton and to also have been able to bring in our banking colleagues to conclude the matter. We’re very pleased to have supported Churchill Group in changing its structure.”

James Bradley, Group CEO of Churchill Group, said: “Churchill is proud of its difference in the FM market, achieving significant growth over 30 years. The EOT is a natural transition as it continues our unique culture and retains our values of doing right, seeking better and putting people first.

“Our colleagues are what makes Churchill’s specialist businesses so successful which is why our founders wanted it to be them who should share in the future success.

“When considering ways in which to take the company forward, we were impressed by the benefits becoming an employee-owned business would bring including furthering our sustainable purpose with better impacts for people and the environment.”

An EOT is a trust that enables a company to become owned by its employees and can be set up by a company’s existing owners. EOTs do not involve direct share ownership by employees, rather a controlling interest in the company is transferred to an all-employee trust which is then held for the benefit of employees.

According to The White Rose Centre for Employee Ownership Survey 2022, the UK EOT Sector has doubled in size since 2020.

The company continues to be managed by the existing leadership team, with the founders acting as a guiding hand to support the long-term stability and sustainability of the business.


This information is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. It is recommended that specific professional advice is sought before acting on any of the information given. Please contact us for specific advice on your circumstances. © Shoosmiths LLP 2024.



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