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The GLIDE Ethos

GLIDE - What it’s about…


GLIDE is an employee owned company that represents all the shareholder members who work in its partner companies. The letters of GLIDE are an acronym of: Growth Led Innovation Driven Employee Company Limited.


This definition embodies the main attributes of the people who work in our company. Any shareholder in any investee company is automatically a member of GLIDE. Irrespective of how many shares a member has, it is one member, one vote, on GLIDE matters.

As shareholders, each one of us has a vested interest in contributing to the process of driving through growth and promoting innovation in all areas of the business. Everyone has the right to express their opinions in a responsible and constructive manner. Likewise, we all have a duty to listen to and explore the validity of those opinions.

“We aspire to work in a challenging, innovative world class business infused with fairness, respect, learning and fun.”

The beginnings of GLIDE…

In the summer of 2011, GLIDE was formed. All shareholders are members of GLIDE which is a private company limited by guarantee. This means that it has been set up, for example, on the same basis as a sports club, where the individual shareholder’s liability is limited to £1.

Since the mid 1990s, Hugh Facey, the founder and executive company chairman of Gripple Limited and Loadhog Limited, has been examining ways to pass on his legacy to subsequent generations of employees. In establishing GLIDE, many considerations had to be taken into account, not least the culture and how to instil our inherent values into everyone that works in the company both now and in the future. Promoting new product development and experimentation in new processes represent key elements of the innovation process.

Hugh Facey, and subsequently Roger Hall, vice chairman of Gripple Ltd and Loadhog Ltd, have both decided to make a gift donation of their personal shares to GLIDE. Their respective donations will be gifted annually over a ten year period, ceasing in 2021. These shares become known as ‘permanent shares’ and can never be sold. They will, over time, generate significant revenue from dividends for GLIDE.

Why was GLIDE established?

  • To harness our unique culture and pass it on to future generations
  • To act as custodian / protector of its gifted share dowry from Hugh Facey and Roger Hall, and to ensure they are never sold
  • To act as market maker in the buying and selling of members’ shares
  • To exercise its right to use the Golden Share, (explained in a following section), in order to prevent the break-up of companies for the sole purpose of profit
  • To establish an employee elected board of directors to represent its members
  • To charge the board with the responsibility of determining the best way to distribute dividend income from the gifted shares on behalf of their members

GLIDE has been established to preserve and develop employee culture; to look after the interests of its members and to generate engagement by everyone in their company. It’s great to feel that everyone is an owner of their business.

Our goals and the Articles of Association 

The operation of GLIDE is controlled under a set of guidelines and goals contained in a document known as the Articles of Association. GLIDE is committed to encouraging each investee company to achieve: 

  • An annual growth in turnover of 10%
  • 25% of annual turnover from products which are less than 4 years old; innovation is key to long term prosperity and independence
  • A contribution of 1% of budgeted profits to charitable causes
  • The promotion and support of employee ownership to other businesses in the wider economy

In addition, GLIDE has a responsibility to invest any income under its custodianship for the benefit of:

  • Its investee companies by investing in new products, machines and processes
  • Its members by investing in sports, social and other leisure facilities
  • Other businesses in the manufacturing and service sectors, offering unique patented products or value added features
  • Its members, by considering when appropriate, the social, healthcare and financial hardships affecting any of its members
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Charity & Community

Working within the community is far more than a set objective we need to fulfil - it's simply part of who we are.


The ethos of giving something back to the community and doing so on a regular basis is something that began 26 years ago at our head office in Sheffield, and continues at our sites in Strasbourg, Chicago and New Delhi today.

Each year, we donate a percentage of our profits to charity, with our internal charities team meeting regularly to discuss fundraising events, as well as nominating worthy causes to benefit from future funding. We like to help out wherever we can, often focusing our efforts on charities and other causes that are less publicised and sometimes overlooked.

Another side of the work we do for worthy causes is best described as 'people power' projects, where we take large teams of our people out of the office to complete rennovations. Most recently, we refurbished a living room and garden space for Leonard Cheshire disability home in Sheffield.

Last year, we competed in the Master Cutler's Challenge - an initiative we have supported on numerous occasions - where each business starts with a fund of £100 and must raise as much money as possible for the Master Cutler's chosen charities. The challenge always puts our culture of fun and innovation to the test and 2014 was no different, with fundraisers such as "I'm a Manager, Get Me Out of Here", ice bucket challenges, culinary tours of the world and knitting hats for premature babies (...One member of staff even got the company logo tattooed on his left buttock...) raising lots of money for worthy causes.  We were delighted and immensely proud to see our people's endeavour recognised at the Master Cutlers Awards ceremony which followed, with Gripple taking the main award home on the night.

The charities team is always pleased to hear from deserving charities seeking help and support so please do get in touch with us; we love to hear from you. 

To learn more about the charities we have helped recently, take a look at our Fundraising Review of 2014.

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Contact Us

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Gripple Limited
The Old West Gun Works
Savile Street East
S4 7UQ

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