Howarths completes family succession plan

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Howarths completes family succession plan

Yorkshire based HR, employment law and health and safety consultancy, Howarths, has announced that managing director, Gavin Howarth, has become the majority owner of the business following the purchase of the combined shareholding of co-founders, Andy and Helen Howarth.

The deal sees Howarth increase his shareholding to 80%, with finance director Tracey Hopkins increasing to 15%, and the firm’s head of employment law and business immigration, Charlotte Geesin, joining the board of directors, also with a 5% shareholding.

Gavin Howarth said: “This deal marks a significant milestone for Howarths, as we continue to grow and advise on increasingly complex and challenging employment law scenarios for many large and established brands across Yorkshire and beyond.

“More importantly though, this is our family taking the next step forward with our succession plan for the business, which will see Howarths remain family owned while securing the future for our exceptional team and valued clients, many of whom have been with us since the business started.”

Howarth added: “While I studied law at university, my parents worked tirelessly to build the business. They had no previous business experience and just one computer in the front living room of our family home. Blood, sweat and tears went in to getting Howarths off the ground, and through sheer determination, hard work, talent – and a refusal to accept failure – they built a hugely successful company.”

The firm, founded in 2003, now supports more than 600 businesses across the north of England and employs 27 staff. In 2017, it launched The Howarth Foundation, a charity founded by Andy Howarth with the aim of supporting individuals that have experienced homelessness back into employment.

To date, the charity has placed 26 people into employment, 34 people into training, referred 17 people for housing assessments, and supported many more into recovery from substance and alcohol addictions.

Howarth explained: “I’m delighted that my parents will continue to run The Howarth Foundation and our Hidden Owls community projects and will therefore still be at the very heart of what Howarths is all about.

“I’m equally delighted to welcome Charlotte to the board of directors and as a shareholder and look forward to continuing working closely with Tracey as she increases her shareholding in the business. Both have been instrumental to the growth and success of Howarths, with Tracey having joined as our first employee in 2003 and Charlotte marking her ten-year anniversary with the business last month.”

The transaction was led by Paul Mann of Squire Patton Bogs, with accountancy advice provided by Paul Calvert of Calvert Dawson and Kevin Winterburn of Sheards Accountants.

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