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GBEA winner transfers business to his team

A Great British Entrepreneur Awards regional winner from 2020 has announced plans to transfer ownership of his business to his workforce.

Simon Dixon, founder of Hatmill – a Yorkshire-based supply chain and logistics consultancy – was named Service Industries Entrepreneur of the Year for the North West. He will transfer 100% of the company’s shares to an Employee-owned Trust (EOT) for the benefit of his staff.

The £6 million business was created in 2009 and now has a team of more than 35 working with clients such as ASDA, Greggs, NHS Supply Chain and Boots. As one of the largest independent supply chain advisers in the UK, Hatmill helps clients improve their warehousing, transport, forecasting and inventory, including the latest warehouse automation technology.

Under the move, employees will benefit financially from the future success of Hatmill, but also stand to share proceeds from the transfer of shares to the EOT, thanks to a long-standing Employee Management Incentive (EMI) scheme triggered by the EOT transaction.

Simon Dixon said: “Since founding Hatmill 12 years ago, the growth and success of the company are beyond my wildest dreams. It’s such a proud moment to be able to hand over Hatmill. Transferring ownership into my amazing team’s hands ensures Hatmill’s ‘Teal’ culture and values live on, which was one of the most important factors to me in considering any next chapter for the company. It’s a key differentiator between Hatmill and our competitors; our clients value the difference it makes to them. It hugely influences our ability to attract and retain the very best talent in the industry.

“I firmly believe this next chapter as an employee-owned business is just reward for the hard work and talent of our brilliant team. Becoming employee-owned is about maintaining and building on our unique culture. Creating a great place to work is fundamental to my business principles, and I’m excited about the next stage of Hatmill’s journey.”

While the ownership structure of Hatmill is being changed, Simon will remain as CEO and Hatmill will continue to work as a ‘Teal’ organisation with a non-hierarchical operating model.