ThinCats the leading alternative finance provider to mid-sized SMEs, has provided funding to support Cheetham Jackson (CJL), an independent financial planning business, transition its ownership structure to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT).
CJL is an independent financial planning business operating out of 10 offices across the north of England. Specialising in wealth management for the long-term, they offer services related to investments, pensions, ISA’s and inheritance tax.
Founded in 2009 by Stuart Jackson, the business’s strong growth in recent years has been underpinned by high levels of service and sound financial advice.
Having successfully guided the team for more than 11 years, Stuart has been planning his succession, deciding that the transition to employee ownership was the most logical next step for CJL’s future.
Stuart who will remain as Chairman of the EOT said: “At the heart of our proposition is our belief that clients deserve an excellent, high level of service and it has been a pleasure to lead a fantastic team who are dedicated to delivering excellent financial planning.”
“When we started planning for this transition, Nikki and I identified the need to build an exceptional leadership team, providing the depth of experience and breadth of scope to carry the business into its next period of sustainable growth. As the business moves to an EOT model, the culture of collaboration that being employee owned brings is vital and I am delighted that all 77 of our employees will now benefit from the new structure.”
Full operational running of the business will transition over the coming years as Stuart and Nikki Jones, Managing Director, continue to develop the Leadership group within Cheetham Jackson. Nikki, who also previously held position of Director of People and Culture, has led on the embedding Responsibility-based Leadership approach and responsibility-based culture within the business.
“It’s a really exciting time for Cheetham Jackson and I feel privileged to be part of leading the team into the next phase of growth for the business. We are incredibly grateful to Stuart, who has so brilliantly built the company over the last decade, and we all share his commitment and passion for providing personal, face-to-face, truly independent financial advice to our clients and playing an important role in all of the communities in which we operate.”
Mike Dinnell, Director Business Development, ThinCats commented: “Stuart, Nikki and the team at CJL have created a positive culture, which they are keen to retain as the business continues to grow. They have a clear plan to execute over the next 5 years and under EOT ownership all employees will benefit. It’s been a real pleasure to support the CJL team and help them on their journey”.
James de le Vingne, Chief Executive of the Employee Ownership Association (EOA), said: “We congratulate our member Cheetham Jackson for its transition to employee ownership. Evidence shows in addition to providing owners with the exit they want, employee-owned businesses are proven to engage their employees in a more meaningful way, via their ownership stake.
“I’m always struck by the passion and commitment in our employee-owned member businesses joined by a common purpose, that business and society are better when people have a meaningful stake and say in their work, and the EOA is excited to help Cheetham Jackson bring its employee ownership to life following its transition.”
Beever and Struthers CF performed financial due diligence whilst Moncreiff Financial Consultancy conducted formal company valuation. Browne Jacobson provided legal support to Thincats. JMW and FSL Legal provided legal support for CJL and the EOT.