There are approximately 1,300 employee owned businesses (EOB) in the UK and half of these have become employee owned since 2021. Many of these businesses are more profitable, more productive and more resilient during times of economic hardship, than conventionally owned competitors.
Capital for Colleagues (C4C) invests exclusively in such UK businesses, which we believe demonstrate a genuine commitment to employee ownership, in order to generate an attractive return for shareholders.
We provide patient capital to enable the transition to an employee owned business (EOB) and to existing EOBs for growth using equity, equity-related investment capital (such as convertible loans) and debt financing.
Investments made by C4C will normally take the form of minority shareholdings, with the Company investing alongside employees and undertaking an active, supportive interest in the investee company. All investments will need to have an eventual opportunity to exit or be expected to return capital and provide an attractive dividend or profit stream.
Potential investee companies will be assessed using investment criteria including, but not limited to:
- An ability to enhance the future value of that company via the injection of our patient capital.
- The prospect of long-term, sustainable growth.
- An ability to benefit from C4C Directors’ and managers’ experience and network of contacts.
- The potential to deliver significant returns for C4C.
Investee companies will be considered irrespective of their current situation, be they profitable, temporarily loss-making or requiring re-financing, but all must show a clear commitment to delivering these attributes:
- A clear commitment to employee ownership
- The ability for all employees to own shares in the business
- The opportunity for employees to be meaningfully engaged and involved in the operation of the business
- Regular sharing of operational and financial information about the business with employees
- For employees to influence corporate strategy
- A fair distribution of profits amongst shareholders