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3 March, 2021 - 16:21 By Tony Quested

Birketts advises Denny Brothers Group on employee buyout

Birketts has advised world leading specialist print company, Denny Brothers Group (Denny Bros), on a move to employee ownership. 

The transaction has seen the independent business remodel to become majority owned by an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) and join the growing number of employee-owned companies across the UK in the process.

Family-owned company, Denny Bros, was founded in 1945 and has supplied bespoke print based solutions including digital, flexographic and lithographic print labels, to its broad client base for over 76 years. 

With an employee cohort of 200, Denny Bros have provided an innovative, high quality printing offering to clients across the pharmaceutical, food, consumer product and agrochemical sectors for decades. 

Comprising of 11 companies, the group is best known for its innovative printed products and in particular the Fix-A-Form® booklet labels. Its other activities cover everything from engineering, tool and die making, signs and nameplates, conference facilities, property management and machinery sales. 

Owned by second generation family members Barry, Graham and Andrew Denny, the business remains a pioneer in the label making industry. 
A new company, Denny Bros Trustee Ltd, has been formed to administer the trust while Barry and Graham retain a minority shareholding.

Birketts team was led by Lisa Hayward (Legal Director, Head of Employee Incentives) and Alexandra Nelson (Corporate) who were supported by a number of colleagues including Devreaux Gravell (Banking and Finance), Sarah Jackson-Koufie (Banking and Finance), Sarah Branwhite (Corporate), Kimberly Sayward, (Private Client), Xiaolei Liu and Kirsty Scripps (Employee Incentives) and Hannah Morris (Corporate). 

Barry Denny, chairman of Denny Bros, said: “Denny Bros has made its name as a world-leader on the quality of the company’s in-house expertise – an achievement that would have been impossible to have realised without the contribution of our employees. 

“As a second generation family-owned business, succession planning is always at the forefront of our thinking and we felt confident that this was the right step for us. 

“Birketts’ team lived up to its reputation as the foremost firm for employee ownership and we were impressed with their practical approach and depth of knowledge in this area.”

Lisa Hayward, who lead the Birketts team, concluded: “In the wake of a highly uncertain year, employee ownership continues to be an attractive option for businesses across the country who wish to protect their legacy. 

“By offering the very people that built the company a stake in its future, Employee Ownership Trust arrangements facilitate increased employee wellbeing and in turn, higher job satisfaction and an increase in collaborative behaviours. 

“A model like this works well for a highly respected and trusted company like Denny Bros, appealing to the values of a modern workforce without compelling them to compromise on their cultural values.”

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