Prevista, a leading provider of government funded Apprenticeships, Traineeships, employment and youth programmes has passed into 100% employee ownership via an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT). James Clements Smith, Managing Director and the previous 100% shareholder in the Prevista group, recently completed the transaction. The Prevista group will now be 100% owned by a Trust governed by independent and staff trustees.
Islington headquartered Prevista is almost a quarter of a century old and has served its communities, across London and the South East, tirelessly over this period; assisting tens of thousands of disadvantaged young people & adults on their learning journey towards employment and self- employment and enabling them to progress in work, grow their businesses and improve their life prospects.
James was keen to ensure a legacy for the company and concluded that it was fitting to pass the company into employee ownership via a Trust, thus allowing employees a direct say in the destiny of the business. With the assistance of the Employee Ownership Association, the Prevista Board agreed that an employee owned model could result in better productivity, increased employee participation and a future for the company that builds on its values and successes to date. James will stay on as Managing Director for a transition period, after which Executive Directors Salik Miah and Faye Thomas, will take up full executive authority.
The Prevista EOT will be overseen by a Board of Trustees, including an independent Chair, Jacqui Burke, who commented: ‘’Prevista has always focused on creating opportunities for people in the workplace so operating as an Employee Owned Trust is entirely consistent with our ethos and values. I am proud and excited to be invited to play a part in leading Prevista into the new decade.”
The Trust will have employee representation and, in the first instance, Salik will take up this Directorship to represent all employees. Prevista will continue to be governed by an independent Board of Directors appointed by the Trust.
Faye commented: “I am delighted to have re-joined Prevista as Co Executive Director alongside Salik, we both welcome the move to an EOT, the timing is right in the current landscape and we both are confident that this will lead to even greater employee engagement and commitment, greater drive for innovation and improved business performance. We are excited to be leading this forward with our colleagues who will have a meaningful stake in the business and build on the strong foundations and reputation that James has created.’’
James will work with the Trust and employees to embed the new form of ownership, roll out the plan explaining how the structures and new business model will operate and how employees will interact in the new landscape. His focus will be on ensuring that employees understand the model and how the Trust operates for the benefit of all employees. James will also work with the Executive Team on Business Development and the strategic direction of Prevista.
Notes to Editors
The transaction is funded through company funds paid over a period of 3 years at a discounted market value, based on an independent valuation, conducted by Macintyre Hudson, Accountants (MHA) of approx. 35%.
Prevista has a turnover of £10m/annum, holds a number of accreditations: IIP Gold for its approach to people; The Matrix Standard; IS0 27001 and 9001; the Merlin Standard for its approach to Supply Chain developments, management and review; is recognised by Ofsted as a GOOD provider (2019); a registered Disability Confident Committed employer with DWP.
Prevista has over 125 staff, delivery partners and Associates; delivers 3,000 Apprenticeships/annum; delivers almost 1,000 Traineeships per annum; has assisted 25,000 young people through its partner network, upskilled 20,000 adults in the work place; assisted over 10,000 businesses start up and grow; assisted 25,000 adults and young people enter the workforce or with in work progression.
Salik Miah and Faye Thomas have worked for Prevista for over 7 years, rising through the ranks of the company. They are experienced individuals with a deep understanding of our clients, funders and partners, with complementary talents and have the full confidence of the Prevista Board and the EOT.
James Clements Smith commented: ‘’It is fitting that Prevista is now held in Trust for the benefit of all employees, that employees will have a say in the destiny of the company; I am incredibly proud of all employees and their dedication to Prevista and the sector. I remain committed to working with the company over the coming transition period’’.
Deb Oxley OBE, CEO of the Employee Ownership Association, said: “We congratulate Prevista on its transition to employee ownership. By widening ownership of the business to its employees Prevista is securing the future of the business, including its ethos, values and employees, while rooting itself locally for the longer term to the benefit of the community it serves’’.
Cripps Pemberton Greenish assisted with the legal elements of the transaction and Katie Haylock, Managing Associate, commented: “We were delighted to advise on Prevista’s transition to an employee-owned business via an employee ownership trust. We are seeing an increasing number of businesses taking this innovative step to vest ownership in staff, thereby increasing engagement, retention and productivity.”
MHA assisted with the valuation and transaction elements and James Lawson, Director commented: ‘’It has been a pleasure to advise James and the Trust on the execution of a strategy which facilitates his desire to exit and safeguards Prevista’s future legacy. Prevista has always been a business with a strong social purpose at its core; I firmly believe the transition to employee ownership is a fitting reflection of Prevista’s values’’
For further information please contact: James Clements Smith- firstname.lastname@example.org