Essex County Council sold it’s ten remaining care homes in 2005 to Excelcare Holdings Plc. Staff were assured that TUPE would protect terms and conditions and would last “indefinitely”. Less than two months later, Excelcare demanded changes in rotas and working hours, followed by radical changes to terms and conditions which included a reduction in pay rates and earnings. The report examines the procurement process and homes transfer, economics of the Essex contract and the Excelcare company strategy (Excelcare operate the homes as ten separate companies, the parent company is registered in Jersey, a tax haven), the impact on residential care and staff, draws lessons for procurement, care standards, inspection and scrutiny. Commissioned by Essex County UNISON. In 2010, 115 workers received nearly £1m compensation for unlawful dismissal – see second pdf file.