A new future for Build Lite – a major announcement.

South Yorkshire based, Build Lite UK, manufacturers of architectural mouldings and innovative building products, has joined the 250+ UK companies that have transitioned to employee ownership through an Employee Ownership Trust.

Build Lite is renowned, in the construction industry, for its range of easy to install, highly cost effective transformational building products.  This includes ‘Stone-Coat’ – a uniquely moulded pseudo-stone alternative and ‘Future Found’ – their fast track passive foundation system that is said to save 30% on traditional methods.

The decision to transform the Business was taken after the directors spent a considerable amount of time, evaluating how best to ensure their successful business continues to thrive and expand, when the time comes for them to exit the Company.

The solution was to create an Employee Ownership Trust. As Managing Director, Paul Goodlad explains ‘both myself and fellow directors, were keen to ensure that the business was in safe hands when, at some point, it comes to handing over the reigns’

He continued, ‘we have spent many years growing the business and have loyal staff, many of whom have been with us for some years. We also have a considerable number of dedicated suppliers and clients, all of whom depend on us continuing to be successful.’

‘Our vision has always been to create a family atmosphere that attracts the best staff, loyal customers and dedicated suppliers. We have always admired the partnership concept of John Lewis and, therefore, looked at a way of creating a similar scheme here at Build Lite’

The concept of an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) is for employees to take a controlling interest in the Business and in Build Lite’s case, without the upfront financial risk of buying shares. The Directors of Build Lite have sold 100% of their shareholding, at market value, to a trust that has been set up on behalf of the staff by external consultants Mackenzie Spencer.

As Mackenzie Spencer director explains, ‘We work with a range of business owners considering succession, which is rarely easy. Although value is usually a significant driver, legacy and rewarding colleagues can be more important to business owners.

Having considered trade buyers, Paul and Trevor decided that there was no one better to own the business than their colleagues that help them build the successful business.’

The trust, with its appointed board, employee representative and three independent trustees, now owns and manages the Company while the current directors remain at the helm for up to the next two years to ensure a smooth handover.

The Trust has also appointed a new managing director, who also becomes a Trust Board member. Tim Turner, who joins from Derbyshire based John Smedley, world renowned manufacturers of high quality British knitwear.

Tim comments on what attracted him to the new position at Build Lite. ‘Having spent a considerable amount of time in the construction industry, I am passionate about quality and reputation. This means I’ve worked with some very talented people. Therefore, the combination of joining a company that has a range of products that offers real genuine solutions and the launch of an Employee Ownership Trust was a huge draw’

He continues, ‘as we know, the construction industry is always looking for practical ways to keep up with the ever- more stringent building regulations while at the same time offering value for money. I believe, Build Lite products certainly tick those boxes.’

‘Their celebrated Future Found trenchless ready-made foundation system is, undoubtedly, a major building site cost saver while Stone-Coat lightweight architectural mouldings have been a ‘lifesaver’ for many developers. Being able to replicate a cast stone product with a significant weight reduction is quite a feat.’

‘This is a definite win-win for all involved. From the current directors and staff to our existing and new customers and suppliers. Everyone benefits.’

This especially includes the staff. As Tyler Warburton, who has worked at Build Lite for the past 15 years says, ‘being able to be involved and have a real impact on the business feels really good and it’s something I’m excited about. I really feel that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.’

He continued, looking forward to the future we have a strong base that I know we can work from. Covid and the mass shortages of raw materials have made this a turbulent year. However, it’s not really had time to sink in as we still have a job to do’

Employee ownership is a fundamental part of the UK government’s policy for economic growth. However, an EOT involves a great deal of trust on everyone’s part. This includes confidence that there’s light at the end of the Covid pandemic tunnel, all existing and future staff ‘buy into it’, the directors remain committed to the agreed time scale for remaining in the Company and the Business continues to grow at its previous rates.

For further information about the Build Lite Employee Ownership Trust, please contact Tim Turner on 01709 242210 or email info@build-liteuk.co.uk