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Sharing the fruits of labour: we are now an Employee Ownership Trust

Milk & Honey PR is changing. From 2nd August 2021, we transferred 55% of group shares to an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT). This means anyone who has been at the agency over 12 months will become co-owners.  

What on earth is an Employee Ownership Trust? 

As a people first agency, we are passionate about our team having their voices heard.  

The Hive Group (including Milk & Honey PR UK, Australia and North America) has changed its legal structure to distribute the majority of shares to the team. This is in a legal vehicle called an Employee Ownership Trust where shares are held in trust for the team. The EOT now owns 55 percent of the business. The Trust will make key decisions on how Milk & Honey PR does business. 

We have set up a Team Council that represents the views of the Trust and advises on key decisions for Hive Group. This change means we are now, legally, part of the strategic decision-making process and will help to guide the agency as it continues to grow. It’s PR by the people, for the people. 

This Council has Lizzie Elkin (me) as President and Tushar Parmar as Employee Council Trustee Director. These positions are created to lead the council and feedback Council advice to the Trustees and leaders of the business.  

Putting people first  

Our core values of energy, bravery, passion, loyalty, respect and collaboration guide all activity at the Hive. This change puts power into the hands of team, giving us the controlling interest in the company. We trust in our people, working together to deliver ground-breaking results and in building a top place to work. 

Being purpose-led means daring to change how things are done. As we have grown to span three continents in just four years, we want to lead the industry by setting the standard for people first governance.  

Swarming: our expansion story 

This announcement has come hot on the heels of our brand new and shiny New York expansion, and the publication of our 2021 People, Purpose, Planet report. Good business works on two levels: driving ethical practices for both people and planet, whist delivering incredible growth and ongoing profitability. We cannot do this by standing still.  

From inception, Milk & Honey PR has skyrocketed in growth. We became B Corp accredited in 2019, becoming one of the first UK agencies to gain certification. In June, the agency was named as a company within B Corp’s ‘Best for the World™ 2021: Workers List’ — making us a top five percent performer.  

Long-standing commitment to team happiness has also seen us gain an Investors in People (IiP) accreditation — qualifying 14th out of 4,000 companies — and win IiP’s Employer of the Year Award 2020. Additionally, we meet PRCA CMS standards — and we are the only agency to hold all three accreditations.  

All this goodness has come alongside the set-up of Milk & Honey Australia in 2019, and Milk & Honey North America in 2021. 

The EOT is the next step in this journey, putting our money where our mouth is on people-first initiatives, placing the power firmly in our teams’ hands.  

It’s hard not to toot the trumpet when it’s this shiny! 

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