Moore Stephens Owner Managed Business of the Year

Winner: MindWorks Marketing

THE Owner Managed Business category was the perfect for winners MindWorks Marketing.

Last year the Emsworth-based company became an employee-owned business. Seventy-five per cent of the company belong to an employees trust and the remainder to the six board members who are investment equity shareholders. In addition to the six directors there are two employee elected representatives.

Ownership of the company, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in October, was transferred to the 35 employees by its founder, and now chairman, John Harris Burland, who still has part-time role in the business.

Mindworks is a full-service marketing agency offering marketing and creative services.

New managing director Michelle Leggatt said the new structure had proved successful and MindWorks had already a number of new clients to its roster which includes such big names as Rolls-Royce, Suzuki, Honda, the Royal Marines Association, the Mary Rose Trust, Rothmans Accountants as well as a number of schools and colleges.

Michelle said: “Now all the staff have a voice in the company and what success looks like and shaping our future. They are all very passionate.”

Employees are encouraged to make suggestions for how the business is run and Michelle said so far 60 per cent of those ideas had been adopted.

She added: “The award is a testament of the hard work of everyone here. Everyone is really buzzing to have won.”

Sue Lucas of category sponsor Moore Stephens said MindWorks had had put the training of employees at the heart of the business and more than half had professional qualifications. It also had internal systems which resembled those of a much larger organisation.

Runners Up


The Natural Travel Collection is a privately owned award-winning travel company, consisting of the following specialist brands: Wildlife Worldwide, The Travelling Naturalist, Dive Worldwide, Families Worldwide, Schools Worldwide and Walks Worldwide.

The company is owned and managed by directors Chris Breen, Teresa Bennett and Nick Joynes who have worked together for many years and are passionate about the sustainable and ethical foundation that underpins every brand and is at the heart of the company values. Each brand has expert teams – everyone is knowledgeable and highly experienced in their roles. The teams are passionate about travel and meticulously create exceptional holidays and experiences.


Diametric Technical Ltd is a corporate branding specialist with over 35 years’ experience of providing innovative, high quality product branding solutions.

Its Southampton-based head office is home to the widest range of processes available in the UK. Diametric design and produce a comprehensive range of commercial badges, labels and nameplates for a wide variety of industries. The company’s longstanding commitment to the product design and manufacturing industry is evident in its continued research and development and has resulted in us working alongside the biggest brands in the world to create exceptional badging and labelling solutions.


Vanilla Catering & Events provides outstanding, innovative food supported by friendly and professional service for every occasion.

Now in its fifteenth year, the company is as passionate as ever about ensuring that you get the experience you are seeking. Whether it’s your wedding, a formal corporate function, or a relaxed private party, Vanilla’s primary focus will always be on producing exceptional food and providing outstanding service.

Based on the banks of the River Hamble in Swanwick, near Southampton, Vanilla’s team of chefs work with the very best and freshest ingredients, locally sourced and sensitive to the seasons wherever possible.