Around 450 staff have transferred to a new housing repairs and maintenance company owned by Stoke-on-Trent City Council.
Unitas has taken over from the joint venture partnership between the authority and Kier Stoke.
It will deliver repairs and maintenance services to 18,500 council homes and 600 public buildings.
Leader of the council, cllr Dave Conway, said: ‘Unitas has been designed to offer an improved, more flexible service for tenants and will ensure that property owned by the council is maintained to a high standard.
‘It will also continue our push towards making services more commercially-minded – driving efficiency and supporting the local economy.’
Local businesses will be supplying goods and services to the company after successfully bidding for work such as plastering, plumbing, joinery and bricklaying.