Kilwinning-based Shuttle Buses, the largest independent bus and coach company in Ayrshire, has been sold to its staff. The management and employees of the business have completed an employee buyout, meaning that the 70 employees now own over 90% of the company through an Employee Ownership Trust. It is believed that the company has become the first such employee-owned bus operator in Scotland and joins a very small group of similar organisations in the UK.
Managing Director David Granger, one of the founders of the business in 1990, has sold the majority of his shareholding to the Trust but will remain a director and Chairman. The role of Managing Director has passed to his son, Ross; both are on the Trust, along with three representatives from the workforce and an independent trustee.
Shuttle Buses operates 60 buses and coaches from its garage in Nethermains Industrial Estate, Kilwinning. A small network of local bus services runs throughout North, East and South Ayrshire, and 23 school contracts cover a similar area. Twelve buses work under contract to Strathclyde Partnership for Transport on its MyBus network, which provides lifeline services for many elderly and disabled people, and contract services are provided for ScotRail, Calmac ferries, Ayrshire College and Wellington School, amongst others. A coach hire business branded Shuttle Coaches provides coach hire to a range of private and corporate customers.
David said “I’m delighted to be passing control of the business over to the very people who are responsible for its success – it’s employees. I look forward to helping guide the company through the next exciting stage of its development.”