In May 1898 the firm moved from a Partnership to become (Private) Limited Company. The main advantage is that in a Limited Company the shareholders liability is limited to the amount of the unpaid amount on the shares that they own. Whereas partners in a partnership have unlimited liability and therefore can be held responsible for the full amount of any debt. Another major difference is the way in which tax is collected. A partnership is not taxed in its own right, but partners are taxed on their share of the profit, irrespective of the amount they took out of the business. However, a limited company pays tax on its profits and directors are taxed on their remuneration.
According to the accompanying notice, the decision to become a Private Limited Company was a family decision and as such the existing partners took the majority of shares in the ‘new Company’, although some were issued to a small number of staff employees.