Geldards advise bespoke commercial furniture makers Opus Magnum on transition to Employee Ownership Trust

Geldards advise bespoke commercial furniture makers Opus Magnum on transition to Employee Ownership Trust

Geldards has advised London-based Opus Magnum, makers of bespoke craft furniture for commercial settings, on the transition to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT).

Established in 1989, Opus Magnum combine traditional craftsmanship with modern technology to design and manufacture bespoke furniture, which is crafted in London, for unique buildings such as the Palace of Westminster, the Bodleian Libraries and the Supreme Court.

A move to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) model is increasing in popularity as an alternative to a business sale on the open market. An Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) benefits the employees of the company as trustees ‘look after’ the shares in the best interests of the employees. It helps protect the business legacy for the future, which cannot be guaranteed in a trade sale and safeguards jobs.

Geldards, one of the leading advisors on Employee Ownership Trusts, advised Opus Magnum on the formation of an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) and the purchase by the EOT of the entire share capital from the two founding shareholders, Chris Turner and John Baulkwill.

Geldards’ Tax Partner Andrew Evans led the deal, advising on all legal aspects of the transaction supported by solicitor Jamie East, Alex Butler Partner in the Corporate team. As well as ensuring the trustees of the EOT understood their role and responsibilities the Geldards team provided support engaging with employees and guiding them through the process.

Commenting on the transaction, Andrew Evans, Partner at Geldards said:

“Geldards were delighted to work with the Chris and John and the new management team to enable the successful transition of Opus Magnum to employee ownership. The sale of Opus Magnum to an employee ownership trust will enable the company to maintain its collaborative way of working and creation of exceptional pieces of furniture by talented makers.”

 Chris Turner from Opus Magnum commented:

“Opus Magnum has always been fortunate to have dedicated people and a transition to employee ownership seemed a natural progression. Andrew Evans at Geldards has guided us through the process with great expertise, clarity and experience. The management and whole team at Opus Magnum has been grateful for this input – Thank you. Now it is over to us all to take things forward to the next generation.”

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