Island employees buy Arran resort

Auchrannie Isle of Arran

ISLE of Arran hotel business, Auchrannie, has become what is said to be Scotland’s first employee-owned resort.

An Employee Ownership Trust has been formed and holds 100% of the shares on behalf of the 160 members of staff who have become owners of the resort; the day-to-day operation of the business will not change.

Auchrannie’s transition to employee ownership was supported by Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Co-operative Development Scotland, with the process managed by Co-ownership Solutions LLP and legal services by Burness Paull LLP; the deal has been structured to “make it affordable to the business without affecting its ability to reward the team and reinvest for the future”.

Commenting on the decision, co-founder and managing director Linda Johnston said employee ownership was the best option to protect the ethos of the company, adding that the staff are “extremely excited” about the move.

“There is no ‘them and us’ now; we’re all in this together,” she said.