THE SCOTTISH Labour leader pitched in to celebrate the 10th Employee Ownership Day (EO Day) at a fun-filled afternoon with staff at a leading campervan converter.
East Lothian based Jerba Campervans, a 100% employee-owned business since 2018, welcomed Anas Sarwar MSP along with fellow MSP Daniel Johnson, before downing tools and hosting a staff barbeque.
EO Day (Friday 24 June) raises awareness of the benefits of employee ownership and is celebrated by many of the estimated 1000 plus EO businesses operating in the UK, at least 146 of which are Scottish-registered and employ 5,350 people.
Jerba Campervans founder Simon Poole has been a flagbearer for the employee ownership movement and EO Day marks his last full working day before he hands over the reins to new MD Paul Kimberlin, before taking on a part time role as Chair of the company.
Simon said: “EO Day is a great way of raising the profile and highlighting the benefits of the employee-owned business model which naturally is one that we fully support.”
“Anas Sarwar has previously expressed an interest in employee-owned businesses so we thought it was a great opportunity to invite him in to see the work we do and he seemed impressed by what he found.”
“The day also provided a chance for all the staff to let their hair down and to relax a bit after what has been a very busy period for the business. With a two-year order book in front of us, it’s important to enjoy some downtime when the chance comes up.”
The politicians in attendance were given a tour around Jerba’s workshop, providing them with the opportunity to scope out a number of its in-progress conversions and to discuss the value of employee ownership with the staff. Both were also invited to join the barbeque in the afternoon.
Scottish Labour Leader Anas Sarwar said: “It has been a pleasure visiting Jerba Campervans on Employee Ownership Day 2022.”
“The site is a wonderful example of both the benefits of employee ownership and the scale of the employee ownership sector in Scotland.”
“The team at Jerba are highly skilled and are creating high quality products in a growing market for Scotland.”
“I want to thank the team for showing me around and wish them continued success!”
James de le Vingne, Chief Executive at Employee Ownership Association which organises EO Day said: “With this year being the 10th annual EO Day, it’s great to hear what Jerba Campervans has been up to.”
“In raising awareness of the benefits of employee ownership, it helps us plant the seed of EO in the minds of the nation to #GrowEO like never before.”
Jerba Campervans was launched in 2006 and specialises in converting and customising Volkswagen Transporter vans for those passionate about adventure and the outdoors.
Converting Volkswagen T6.1 models, the North Berwick based firm is officially recognised by Volkswagen as a Motorhome Qualified Converter, and is the only firm in Scotland to receive this qualification.
With a dedicated and flexible team, the Jerba Campervans’ family adapts to the needs of their customers, creating a house on wheels with the highest UK level of road safety, assuring customers of a safe, and stylish ride.
To find out more about Jerba Campervans, visit www.jerbacampervans.co.uk