Successful Toyota dealership to pass into hands of employees as owners step down

  • New employee ownership trust to takeover Helensburgh Toyota
  • Current owners to stand down after decades at the helm of award-winning firm
  • Bosses say new ownership felt like a ‘natural transition’

Time 11:26 am, January 11, 2024

Scottish dealership Helensburgh Toyota is to be taken over by its employees after staff agreed terms on a new ownership deal.

Workers at the business on the west coast of Scotland have formed the Helensburgh Automotive Employee Trust, in order to assume control of the company.

The outfit, which has two sites in Helensburgh, has represented the Japanese brand for almost half a century and the latest deal has secured its future for the years ahead.

As part of the transition, former owners Gary Mulvaney and Ernie Cowan, will remain in place to ensure a smooth handover process.

The change of ownership comes following a refurbishment of the company’s service workshop, which cost around £500,000.

Outgoing managing director, Mulvaney, initially joined the firm back in 1997. He has described the latest development as ‘exciting’ and backed the new owners to make the business work.

He said: ‘It is a very exciting time for the company with lots of opportunities ahead.

‘Toyota has been a global leader in hybrid technology for over a quarter of century and is developing a range of electric and hydrogen vehicles to give our customers a genuine choice for the future.

‘We are proud to continue to represent this trusted brand.

‘People have always been at the heart of what we do, whether that is staff, customers or the community.

‘This felt like a natural transition as the business will remain in the hands of those local staff who have made it what it is. Our customers value the service, the personal attention, and the familiar trusted face when they walk in and that will remain.’

Fellow boss, Cowan, joined the company in 1978. He added: ‘It has been an honour to help this business grow and thrive, but the time is right for the next generation to take things forward.’

Going forward, the new team will be led by new centre principal Tim Roome.

He will be joined on the leadership team by general sales manager Kirsteen McGuire; used manager Gavin Wilson and finance manager Jane Victor.

Also on the management team will be service manager Scott Brown and parts manager Euan McIntosh.

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Main image: ©Helensburgh Toyota

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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