We’re pleased to have played an important role in helping Essex-based construction firm Readie Construction (Readie) become an employee-owned business. The £200 million turnover firm, founded in 2008 by Stuart Read, has been acquired by an employee ownership trust (EOT), with the EOT immediately securing a 100 per cent shareholding in the business.
Having undertaken a strategic options review, the deal has enabled the shareholders of Readie to realise the capital value of the business while protecting its independence and creating a platform for future growth as an employee-owned business.
Our Corporate Finance team, led by Partner Jon Dodge and Senior Managers, Ryan Symonds and Matt Field, acted as lead adviser to Readie’s executive team to explore all options available for a structured exit. Having reviewed and considered the various possibilities, it became clear that the implementation of an EOT would provide the shareholders with their desired outcome and, at the same time, provide long term stability for the company’s 150+ employees, enabling them to share in the potential financial rewards that an EOT structure facilitates.
FRP was engaged to design the deal structure, create a detailed financial model, and draft and submit tax clearances to HMRC. We also prepared a detailed share valuation for the directors and the trustees of the EOT. Birketts provided expert legal advice and support throughout the process.
Stuart Read, Chairman and Founder of Readie, said: “Having considered the options for the business and our vision for it, all shareholders are convinced that the transition to employee ownership is the perfect next step in the journey of Readie. The FRP team have provided considered, honest, practical, commercial and highly professional guidance throughout our time working with them. We have been extremely impressed with their approach and the depth of knowledge they have shown in exploring all of the options available to the shareholders and the business. We are hugely grateful to them for helping us implement the EOT.”
Jon Dodge, Corporate Finance Partner at FRP, said: “This transaction is an important milestone in the exciting story of Readie and we look forward to watching the continued growth and success of the business under its new ownership model. The growth in employee ownership as a sustainable business model has become increasingly popular over the last eighteen months and is playing an important role in supporting already successful businesses, preserving their cultures while providing viable and structured exit routes for those who have spent years building them.”