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Navenby-based DBS Internet Marketing wins FSB innovation trophy

Directors and staff at Navenby based business ‘DBS Internet Marketing’ are celebrating winning the Doug Balderson Agriculture Award for Innovation that was presented to them at Lincolnshire Show.

The award competition was for all of the businesses that exhibited in the FSB Experts in Business Marketplace marquee during Lincolnshire Show but it is not a trade stand competition as it focusses more on the innovative nature of the whole business.

The competition was closely fought but for the Judges the winning factor was the use of the Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) governance structure utilised by DBS Internet Marketing Ltd. This is a ‘John Lewis’ style format that encourages owners to transfer a controlling stake of the Company to its employees. Provided certain rules are met the scheme can provide relief from Capital Gains Tax that might otherwise be payable. The Trust can also be used to pay tax free bonuses to staff.

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Pictured are James Hopkins and Julie Priestley of DBS Internet Marketing

Business founder David Clarke, has worked hard to encourage a close knit, family atmosphere within his team. He began to consider employee ownership as a means of giving a gradual exit for himself as the sole shareholder and also to protect the long term future of DBS. The plan is to retain employees for the long term and an employee ownership structure was seen as helping to cement the DBS culture.

David said; "All of the DBS team members now own a part of this fantastic company. For me it makes great business sense to reward the very people that have helped to build DBS. Now that the whole team has equity they have a vested interest to remain and to grow the business even more."

The award was presented to DBS Director Julie Priestley and colleague James Hopkins by FSB Greater Lincolnshire Regional Chairman Doug Balderson.