Gripple Limited, the Sheffield-based employee-owned manufacturer which has achieved national and world-beating success, has a new managing director whose focus will be on mirroring and advancing the company’s proven strengths – accessible leadership, dynamic vision and continuous innovation across the business.

Ian Farquhar, 44, has an impressive pedigree after 22 years as an executive with Rolls Royce and David Brown and is a strong advocate of UK manufacturing and creativity.

Ian said: “I am determined to build on the success of a company which I regard as very special not only through its constant stream of innovative products and ethos but also its great people.

“I don’t believe in company hierarchy and at Gripple anyone, both within and outside the company, is encouraged to make a contribution through accessible leadership. The company has proved that this plays an important part in achieving world class performance. I thank Gripple for giving me the opportunity to help to write the next chapter in its history of success.”

The final choice of who should take over as Gripple managing director was taken by the board of GLIDE – Growth Led Innovation Driven Employee Company Ltd – which was formed to preserve and develop employee culture and ensure that the company can never be sold. It is an employee-owned company representing all shareholders working in its member companies – Gripple, Loadhog and PMS Diecasting.

Executive chairman, Hugh Facey, who ‘held the fort’ until Ian ‘took up the reins’, said: “Ian is very much a people person which is what Gripple is based on. We were looking for someone with the same passion for Gripple and Sheffield and enterprising vision. I think we have found it in Ian and he is already settling in extremely well.”

Ian, who is a dedicated cyclist, will continue to live in Holmfirth with his wife, Kath and his three children.