becomes Employee owned

Posted on May 4th, 2022 Ltd, pioneer of online school uniform supply for parents, has become employee owned.

Husband and wife team, Andy Utting and Carolyn Budding, have run the business for 11 years, and recently transferred their ownership to an Employee Ownership Trust. Their move will give staff a greater sense of ownership and its benefits as the business develops.

“We are in the business of providing quality, affordable school uniform in an easy way for parents, carers and schools to purchase. Our business is built on expert knowledge of fabrics, and sourcing, and an efficient operation with a continuous improvement philosophy” said Andy Utting.

The company is well placed to deliver the changes brought about by the Department for Education guidance on school uniform costs and to advise schools on how best to approach the new rules. Having changed its sourcing model some time ago to develop and manufacture its own uniform, it is better able to maintain quality, manage supply and control costs. Recently the business teamed up with Uniformerly, an online second hand uniform market place, and will be offering PayPal Pay in 3 to help parents ease the burden of buying uniform.

“Our teams have overcome the most difficult challenges of the last few years of Brexit, Covid and now the Ukrainian war.

“We wanted to not only reward our staff for the work and commitment they have put in, but to secure the character of the business. With family run companies often being swallowed up into larger organisations as their owners and founders move on, we believe the future evolution of Ltd is best served through its continued independence, which employee ownership delivers.” Andy commented.

As part of the same deal, sister company, Terra Nova Equipment Ltd has also become employee owned. It began making tents and outdoor gear nearly 40 years ago and it has 4 Guinness World Records for the lightest tent.

Carolyn Budding said, “We have a great and loyal team, some of whom we’ve worked with for 22 years. People enjoy working in our businesses, so it was important to retain the culture and provide ongoing job security for our staff as we develop the succession plan for the ongoing leadership of the business.”

Sylwester Wacht was appointed as managing director of the group and subsidiaries some 18 months ago, enabling Andy to concentrate on the transition of the Hubaco Group businesses to employee ownership.

Andy said, “The team have demonstrated they can run these businesses very well with Sly’s leadership. Carolyn and I remain on hand for advice, and will assist with the development of the businesses over the next few years, where needed. However, it is important that younger people are able to develop their own ideas and can see a path to senior management and greater responsibility.”

There is clear evidence that companies with significant levels of employee ownership have a happier workforce with more engaged and innovative staff. Such businesses experience lower levels of absenteeism and staff turnover, and are more profitable and desirable places to work.


Catgories: Parent Info