Employee ownership structure adopted at Paramount Interiors

Paramount Interiors has announced the successful completion of an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) scheme, which will see its staff own a majority shareholding of the business. The deal was structured and advised on by the GS Verde Group.

The deal marks a major milestone for Paramount Interiors after exceptional growth over the past 12 months, which has included the multi-million-pound redevelopment of Fusion Point One in central Cardiff and winning Workplace Design of the Year for Grade II listed building, Hodge House.

The substantial growth across South Wales and the South West has been incredible for the commercial interiors specialist and for entrepreneur Richard Jones, having only completed the purchase of Paramount Interiors in 2018 in a management buy-out.

Richard was appointed as Managing Director of the business in 2017, and since completing the MBO, Paramount Interiors has seen a significant year on year increase to being on target for a £30m turnover in 2021, with a string of high-profile contract wins, an acquisition and several senior appointments.

Richard Jones said: “Paramount Interiors have many long-standing staff members, and the people here are at the heart of all that we do. I am absolutely delighted with the opportunity to reward our talented team with a stake in the business for the outstanding contribution and commitment they have shown over the many years, particularly through the most challenging of times.”

“Despite the onslaught of the gruelling pandemic on offices nationwide, there is still plenty of movement in the design and build market, as our record-breaking year shows. Our focus for the future is to keep setting the standard in transforming working environments into places where people want to be.”

As per the requirements for an EOT scheme, Paramount Interiors staff will become majority shareholders, collectively owning 51% of the business. The benefits of an EOT include the creation of a more employee-centric business structure which will empower staff and in turn benefit the business as a whole.

The company has also appointed a separate trust board to ensure the EOT acts in the best interests of employees and will be joined by an external EOT expert.

Helen Bartlett, Design Director of Paramount Interiors and EOT Board member, commented: “These are truly exciting times for Paramount Interiors. Richard’s decision to sell his majority shareholding reflects not only how much he values our staff but also the respect they have for him in terms of how committed they all are.”

“And whilst the past year during the pandemic has undoubtedly been challenging for all, everyone continues to go above and beyond to ensure our clients have the experience and more that they deserve. The EOT therefore gives staff further recognition that you get out what you put in.”

The deal was led by the GS Verde Group, with Craig Blackmore, Managing Director of Verde Corporate Finance being the lead advisor, and Matthew Sutton, Director of Greenaway Scott, providing legal advice.

Craig Blackmore said: “What Richard and his team have achieved in this short space of time has been absolutely incredible. The business has always had a strong team ethic, and an EOT was the perfect opportunity to reward the team. Paramount Interiors are a pleasure to work with and we were delighted to assist them in this deal.”

Matthew Sutton added: “We are delighted to have worked with Paramount Interiors on this deal and to witness the business go from strength to strength. We look forward to seeing what the future holds for them.”

After a strong start to the year, having won contracts worth £15m in the first 3 months of 2021, including the £5M phase two refurbishment works at Hodge House in Cardiff, Paramount Interiors continues to grow rapidly across South Wales and the South West.

For more information on Employee Ownership Trusts, a free guide can be found here.