Intelligent Finishing Systems (IFS), the supplier of print finishing equipment and the exclusive UK and Ireland distributor for the extensive Horizon range, successfully transferred 100% of the company to its 30 employees in an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) on October 1.
The decision follows record sales and profit results for 2018, during which, the company supplied more print finishing equipment to UK printers than at any other time.
This succession plan for the future ownership of the company was delivered by shareholders Eric Keane, Bryan Godwyn and Jason Seaber.
Eric explained, ‘This plan needed to guarantee the continuity of the business long into the future, to the mutual satisfaction of all stakeholders (employees, suppliers and customers). It also needed to provide the best platform for the company’s continued growth and give a fair return on our investment. We are all absolutely delighted with the result as it achieves all of those things.’
Bryan added, ‘We wanted to ensure that it would be a succession plan preserving the good name of the company and enabling it to continue its development along the current path. We have always valued our independence. It is something that is in our culture, as we believe it promotes the very best creativity, commitment and sense of belonging by the whole team. It enables us to have a real identity in what we do and deliver the very best customer experience. We are glad to say that the EOT enables this to continue.’
Bryan took the opportunity to officially stand down as managing director after 30 years in the industry. He will remain on the board during a short transitionary period.
Eric commented, ‘Bryan has been a real driver and leader at IFS for the last 30 years. He has grown the company to its current unrivalled market position -an example for everyone in the business. His work rate, commitment and customer driven ethos are something that will leave an enduring legacy.’
Under the EOT the new board of directors will consist of managing director Eric Keane, technical sales director Jason Seaber and a senior management team featuring four long term employees – head of technical services Gareth Read, operations manager Kelly Moore, credit control and HR manager Marion Cooper and technical services administration manager Michele Faulkner.