Yorkshire's Riding high
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• Yorkshire Rider's staff buyout was formerly signed and agreed last week — nearly two years after the formation of the comany at the time of deregulation.
The company valued at 223 million: 51% of the shares will rest with an eight-man management team and 49% with the company's 3,5000 workers.
The company was valued by consultancy Peat, Marwick and McLintock and the purchase price represents 216 million nett asset value with a £7 million premium which takes account of the firm's healthy trading position, its dominance in the West Yorkshire network of services and rapidly rising property values, especially in Leeds.
The management part of the deal is led by managing director Bill Cottham, who is acquiring 10% of the shareholding, together with the two other directors — Ian Buchan and Philip White (with 8% each). Five other senior manager will get 5% each.
Around £500,000 has been raised by the management themselves with the remainder made up by loans from the County Nat West Bank.
The employees 49% is financed by Unity Trust Bank and takes the form of an Employee Share Ownership Plan (ESOP) trust administered on behalf of all the employees.
Shares have been issued at a nominal value of 5p and will be issued to all staff free of charge upon their completion of a twoyear qualifying period.
There will be a free issue this month of 125 shares per employee together with a oneoff free issue of 25 shares per year of service to all employees with consecutive service with Yorkshire Rider's predecessor West Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive and former local authority companies that were amalgemated during the 1970s.
The new Yorkshire Rider Board consists of five members: the three executive directors, Cottham, Buchan and White, together with the two non-executive directors nominated by employees. The two non-executives directors are Tommy Limpitlaw, a Leeds-based employee, and councillor Michael Simmons, who is chairman of the West Yorkshire Passenger Transport Authority and chairman of the transportation committee of the Associaton of Metropolitan Authorities.
The ESOP Trust will be hended by elected representatives of the workforce. About six will be elected and will be joined by two non-voting trustees — one from mangement and one from the trades unions. A professional adviser may also be elected.
With other 1,100 vehicles in the fleet, Yorkshire Rider is the third largest company outside London and has a turnover of £65 million.