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Wealth firm employs 'John Lewis' model to keep predators at bay
by James Poulter on Sep 16, 2013 at 08:11
Employees at Wise Investments have acquired a 51% stake in the firm in move mirroring the ‘John Lewis model’ of staff ownership.
Each of the firm’s 24 employees now has a stake in the firm, owned through a trust that will run the company for the benefit of all current and past employees.
The rest of the firm remains under the ownership of founder Tony Yarrow (pictured) and fellow director Heather Cooper-Harris, although the trust has a 10-year option to purchase the remainder.
Speaking to Wealth Manager, former cover star Yarrow explained: ‘We wanted to place the business in a structure that would encourage long-term thinking and minimise the likelihood of a business sale.’
He added that for the company to be sold, it would require 75% of staff to vote in favour of a deal.
Profits are to be shared among all employees, with bonus payments paid as a percentage of employees’ salaries, with the same percentage for every employee.
Yarrow remains on the board and continues to work as an investment manager, while son Hugh and former head of research Ben Peters become joint managing directors. As part of the restructure, fund manager David Stephenson steps down from the board.
The acquisition was for an undisclosed amount and was subject to HMRC approval.
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