Highland Fuels has successfully completed the transfer of a majority number of shares of the company to its employees. The company’s transition reinforces the Scottish highlands as the forefront for employee ownership in Scotland.
The heritage of Highland Fuels has always been one of investment and growth and the entrepreneurial spirit that was established following its formation still runs through the company over 65 years on. The geographical development of the company has been vast with 11 depots across Scotland as well as commercial reach into the north of England.
The business operates a fleet of over 45 road tankers, owns 16 petrol stations and is supported by over 250 employees spread between its most southerly office located in Manchester to its most northerly office based in Lerwick, Shetland.
Chairman and owner, George Shand, has been considering the future of the company and has always been mindful of the loyalty of the staff and the company’s roots in the north of Scotland. “We’re proud of being different. We’re a Highland based company with a very wide reach. We live our values” shared George who previously led a management buyout of Highland Fuels in 2001 which was built around ensuring that the company remained firmly in local hands. George, working with his fellow directors, was keen to find a business model that preserved the company’s rich heritage and importantly maintained continuity of operations and employment for the long term as has been the culture of the company to date. In doing so, the employee ownership route was identified as it enables the core values and the purpose of the company to remain, whilst also further empowering the team to drive the company’s growth plans into the future.
The news was welcomed warmly by the company’s employees, many of whom have been with the company for many years.
Managing Director Stephen Rhodes added “Employee ownership is perfect for us. It truly enables every single employee to benefit from the company’s advancement and provides the right platform for us to realise a positive culture, high engagement and great performances as we progress to the future”.