IT & comms business Grapevine becomes 100% employee owned

Building upon three decades of supporting local businesses, Poole-based Grapevine is taking the next step in the evolution of the company, bringing the team to the forefront as it becomes an Employee Ownership Trust this summer.

Now a full-service IT and communications support provider, Grapevine has come a long way from its early days as a reseller of mobile contracts in 1991. Many of today’s team have been a part of that journey, with 30 year and 25 year staff anniversaries taking place alongside this latest announcement from the company.

As an Employee Ownership Trust, ownership of the business will transfer from the founders to the broader team of 20 staff members, working across the South and South West. The scheme rewards those who have dedicated a substantial amount of time to company as well as more recent additions, who have each contributed to Grapevine’s notable transformation.

Managing Director, James Spinks provides further insight into this strategic move.

“As a business we’re recognising our history to date of empowering staff, which can be seen in their longevity with the company, and looking to how we continue that. We have ambitious growth plans and that cannot be achieved without the right people onboard. Becoming an Employee Ownership Trust provides our team with additional job security and allows them to focus on what they do best, for us, and our clients.”

Company founder, Brian Vockins shared his thoughts on the transition to an employee owned trust and the importance to him and his co-founder, Hilary Vockins that the legacy of Grapevine be protected.

“The three major shareholders decided some three years ago that it was time to plan for retirement. We had, over 30 years built a strong and resilient business and wanted to pass on this to our loyal staff and management teams. The government supported EOT scheme provided just the right mechanism.”

The UK Employee Ownership Association reports employee owned business as achieving higher productivity, greater levels of innovation and more resilience to economic turbulence, with workforces that are more engaged, more fulfilled and less stressed. Recognised Employee Owned businesses include KPMG, Richer Sounds and Riverford Organics.


To learn more about Grapevine please visit

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