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The Joy of Enterprise Management Incentives
Read our free guide to the UK's most tax-efficient share scheme.
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2 min read

Thirst: sharing the love with the team

Thirst: sharing the love with the team

Startups typically give a slice of the pie to their teams, and when company founder Fred Thompson started Thirst, he leaned into that tried and tested tradition.

For Thirst, it's been an incredibly successful way to attract and retain top talent. 

Giving the team skin in the game

Founded in 2021, Thirst is an AI-powered educational platform, designed to accelerate learning for companies across the UK.

Fred told us that when it comes to his share scheme, “it's all about making sure the people who are with us from early on in the journey are actually rewarded by having some skin in the game.”

“By sharing, we demonstrate that we're invested in them and both sides benefit from having a scheme in place. Even from the earliest implementation of the scheme, we saw growth and definitely saw rewards from sharing.”


It's easier than people think

Thirst kept their share scheme simple and have set theirs up so that team members can reap the reward when the business is sold.

The company manages their share scheme through Vestd, the UK’s most powerful share scheme platform. 

“We found the platform by chance but it’s been the perfect way to do it. It's a really nice and clear set up with a wizard-style interface asking you all the key questions. And as well as being software, there’s also the team behind the scenes who really help you in terms of questions - they get back to you very, very, sharpish.

“Managing the scheme isn’t as hard as people might think. We have a government-backed EMI scheme and Vestd sends us notifications when we need to send things to HMRC or what-have-you.”

“You don't have to think about it, and you can also project what shares might be worth. So it goes above and beyond just ‘hey, there's your scheme’. It gives you a way to track everything and to inspire people.”


“You know, people don't move on from our business, generally speaking. We try to make sure that they're in it for the long run by incentivising them with the share scheme.”

“The scheme provokes team members to make decisions in line with business objectives and profitability, because it has a direct impact, you know, to the individuals involved in the scheme.”

“It’s been great for us because we don’t see our teams moving on and they stay really invested in what we are doing, which is pretty key.”

Marking National Share Scheme Day

"We've got to be appreciative of our teams and how they operate, and make decisions as a business to keep hold of talent.

"National Share Scheme Day gives us a nice focal point to reflect on that, and how we can continue sharing to help out people in our communities and settings."

Celebrating Manchester 'The City of Sharing 2024'

“There’s such a sense of community up here - it's really good to be a Manchester business. Thirst is Manchester born and bred and it’s where we call home.

“When I’m out on a run, I’ll see random people walking by and they’ll always say hi. And even just that level of sharing…I don’t think I’ve felt that in places outside of Manchester, the sharing and camaraderie.

“All the businesses here pull together and talk to each other. I've always found that appealing. So it's nice to keep that going and to stay true to our roots.”

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