Working with Mobius Group to aid businesses with succession planning

Working with Mobius Group to aid businesses with succession planning
Mobius Group

Founded by Kingsley Tedder and Andrew Beer in 2020, Mobius Group was established to assist the proprietors of owner managed businesses to exit in the best way possible, aiding business owners to deliver a legacy through Employee Ownership Trusts (EOTs). Mobius deals with the design, implementation and accounting side of an EOT, and is able to recommend the best fit lawyers to advise on the legal aspects.

It was while working as a Finance Director for convenience store chain McColl’s that qualified Chartered Accountant Kingsley realised his desire to help small and medium-sized businesses with their succession planning. Since starting, Mobius have helped more than 20 businesses of all sizes design and execute their EOT plans.

Due to his time working with various clients, Kingsley knows all too well how the traditional avenues for trade sales can leave business owners feeling they have lost control of their business for extensive periods. The primary goal of the EOT is to operate a thriving business for the advantage of its staff, who are often considered its most valuable asset. Mobius anticipates a rise in the adoption of this exit strategy due to its combination of a capital gains tax exemption and the obligation for the company to stay under the control of an EOT.

Kingsley contacted us to assist their client, a specialist criminal litigation law firm, with the legal elements surrounding their EOT. Our Head of Employee Share Schemes, Ian Fraser, made sure all of the relevant legal documents were in place to allow the EOT to go ahead smoothly.

When asked why they chose to work with Harper James, Kingsley said:

Employee Ownership Trusts are quite a niche area, so while looking for a law firm that could give the correct advice, we were also looking for a team our client would approve of, being lawyers themselves. The price point was also attractive to us as we are  a small business ourselves. As we act as an intermediary between our clients and lawyers, we always want to make sure our clients get the best deal possible whilst getting expert legal advice. Ian and the team at Harper James have been a pleasure to work with.

Commenting on what it was like working on the EOT, Ian said:

Like Kingsley, I also enjoy helping SMEs shape their future growth plans. It’s been great to be a part of this transaction with them, and I’m looking forward to working with Kingsley and Mobius in future.

Within the next five years, Mobius expect to have completed EOTs for more than 50 companies and they have no plans stopping there – Kingsley and Andrew plan on expanding their team.

When asked what business owners can learn from the Mobius journey so far, Kingsley offered up this piece of advice:

It’s never too early to begin thinking about your exit or succession plan. Don’t look at the term exit as a ‘swear word’, it’s a natural part of the business life cycle and an EOT will put the framework in place to make your exit as smooth as possible. If you are weighing up your options for exiting or selling your business, an EOT could be your best option – especially if your employees have a vision of progression.

About our expert

Ian Fraser

Ian Fraser

Employee Incentives Partner
Having qualified in 2000, Ian Fraser has over 25 years’ experience advising on employee incentives, including bonus/phantom equity plans, share incentive plans and manager equity arrangements. He is a former partner in Simmons & Simmons and K&L Gates and has also worked as a consultant for PwC.

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