Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg officially opened a second office of the Employee Ownership Association, based in Sheffield on the premises of fastenings manufacturer Gripple – one of the UK’s best examples of the effective and increasingly popular business culture.
The Employee Ownership Association’s (EOA) chief executive, Iain Hasdell, joined Gripple chairman Hugh Facey and a number of company business associates to witness Nick Clegg ‘cutting the ribbon’ and participate in a question and answer forum.
Nick Clegg MP said that he is a strong advocate of co-owned firms. “They put more people in the driving seat and allow employees to reap the benefits of their hard work,” he said.
Mr Clegg said that there is evidence to support the idea that co-owned firms are more successful and achieve faster economic growth. “You only have to look at Sheffield’s Gripple to see just how successful an employee owned business can be,” he commented.
During the official opening of the office, specially created in Gripple’s headquarters, Iain Hasdell commented: “This is a critical time for employee ownership. There is much to be positive about but also so much more that needs to be done to improve the climate for employee owners.”
Every member of Gripple’s 350-strong workforce is a shareholder of the manufacturing business. The company claims this inspires a vested personal interest in its continuing success at home and overseas.
Mr Facey is a firm believer in employee ownership, has been an EOA board member for a number of years and an unflagging ‘flag bearer’ for the ethos. “Gripple is in the hands of entrepreneurial and innovative staff who are custodians of each other’s money,” said Mr Facey at the event.
Gripple scooped the People and Skills prize at The Manufacturer of the Year Awards 2010
Entries to the 2012 awards must be submitted by July 31!