Aspect embraces employee ownership as growth continues

21/06/2024

Aspect, a leading integrated consultancy, has sold 100% of its shares to employees through a new Employee Ownership Trust (EOT).

The announcement was made today, on Employee Ownership Day which sees firms across the UK celebrate as more businesses embrace the model.

Founder and CEO Andrew McCallum will continue to lead the company, with fellow Board Director Yvonne McCallum, which has seen a revenue growth of over 250% since 2019, reaching £3.1 million in 2023.

Marketing Director Jenny Adams has been appointed as Employee Trustee following an internal election, with Andrew McCallum serving as Founder Trustee.

The EOT will be chaired by Independent Trustee June Boyle, who brings extensive experience from roles at BP, RBS, BT, Lloyds Banking Group, and Edinburgh Napier University.

June Boyle, Chair of the Aspect Employee Ownership Trust, said: “Aspect is an excellent business with a strong team and impressive client portfolio in the UK and internationally.

“In my experience, businesses with a progressive culture where employees are engaged and involved in the direction of the company deliver better performance.

“In my role as Chair of the Trust Board, I look forward to seeing Aspect go from strength to strength as an employee-owned business and I will work with my fellow Trustees to make sure the company continues to develop and grow in the best interests of employees.”

Since the introduction of EOTs in 2014, employee ownership has grown by 90% and there are now more than 1,800 employee-owned businesses in the UK.

Research indicates that employee-owned businesses have a positive impact on individuals, communities and the wider economy.

Tom Arthur MSP, Minister for Employment and Investment, highlighted the positive impact of employee ownership on the economy, noting a 113% increase in turnover for employee-owned businesses in Scotland compared to 2022.

Arthur said: “It’s good to see Aspect joining the growing list of companies recognising that employee-ownership is positive for business as we progress towards the Scottish Government’s target of 500 employee-owned businesses by 2030.”

James de le Vingne, Chief Executive of the Employee Ownership Association, said: “It’s great to welcome Aspect to a growing sector that is Proudly Employee Owned. What a great way to mark EO Day!

“I’m always excited to see Scottish businesses transition to employee ownership, helping fulfil the country’s ambitious targets to grow the inclusive and democratic impact of its economy.

“I look forward to seeing Aspect deliver greater levels of involvement and representation for its employees, and the benefits it’ll bring to its local community.”

Carole Leslie, Employee Ownership Specialist at Ownership Associates UK, said: “I’m seeing more and more companies take the EOT route and have already completed more transactions in the first half of 2024 than I did in the whole of 2023.

“For many business owners, it’s an ideal way to realise value in their business whilst rewarding their staff by securing the company for the long-term future. It’s great news for the economy, too.

Aspect, which operates from offices in Aberdeen and Edinburgh, advises clients globally in sectors such as energy, infrastructure, sustainability, technology, life sciences, and the natural economy.

The company was advised by Blackadders LLP, Cactus Consultants Limited, Ownership Associates UK, and Reference Point Advisory Limited.

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