Leading UK-wide recruitment and training company Acorn Group has launched a new business aimed at capturing a major share of the overseas mining, engineering and resources recruitment markets in Australia, Africa and Asia.
Building on the success of Acorn’s 20 years’ experience and its recent two consecutive record years of growth in the UK, the new business, Acorn Global, will initially operate from bases in Perth and Singapore and is expected to open further offices in Brisbane and Adelaide by the end of the year.
Fuelled by a surge in demand overseas for highly-skilled labour – particularly in the mining, engineering and resources sectors – Acorn Global is recruiting staff from across the UK to work in the lucrative minerals, oil and gas extraction industries of Australia, Mozambique, Botswana and Qatar, as well as placing people in the construction, engineering, IT, utilities, energy and logistics sectors.
People with engineering skills, such as ex-forces personnel who are struggling to hold down suitable employment here in the UK, and who may be seeking a new life on the other side of the world are being placed by Acorn Global in an industry across the Asia-Pacific and African regions that is not only generating a huge demand for skilled staff, but is crying out for personnel with UK qualifications that are highly-regarded across the globe.
Following a year of development and an initial pilot programme run by Acorn’s Scott Liddle and Lewis Fawsitt together with an international mining business in Australia, Acorn Global’s efforts has proved so successful that they have already placed over 100 people into new careers, in positions such as project engineers, senior mechanics, technical managers, plant fitters, diesel fitters, geologists and geotechnical engineers, and with another 100 committed to travel over the next six months.
Joining the team alongside Scott Liddle and Lewis Fawsitt is Wyn James, previously a highly-experienced business builder with investment bank JP Morgan Chase and the Royal Bank of Canada who has spent the last 20 years working in the Far East – Wyn will head up Acorn’s Asia-Pacific region from their office base in Singapore.
Servicing clients on the ground, and developing ‘local’ business in Australia will be new Operations Director, Australia, Mike Otty; an experienced recruitment specialist who, before moving to Australia to work, was HR Manager for aircraft seating manufacturer Contour in South Wales.
Wyn, who has spent much of his career working alongside chief executives and company owners, said: “When I was approached to help set up Acorn Global I immediately knew that this was an opportunity that doesn’t come up very often – the chance to build an innovative and exciting new project as part of an existing dynamic and successful business like Acorn has proved to be a terrific opportunity for me.
“Acorn has an excellent reputation across the UK as a domestic supplier of labour, and Acorn Global will use the 20 years’ experience of placing skilled people into technical positions throughout the UK, to see the business move into the export market, supplying highly-skilled staff for lucrative overseas markets.”
Matt Southall, Group Managing Director of Acorn, which has its headquarters in Newport, South Wales, said: “Acorn Global is a new company and subsidiary of the UK group, utilising the fantastic infrastructure, experience and management team we have established here to export people to parts of the world where the economies are booming.
“We have visited Australia three times in the last 12 months, and the clients we have secured have terrific comfort from our UK network and the fact that we are also supported by 600 Synergie offices across Europe. It is really exciting times.”
“At Acorn we are always looking for aggressive organic growth and this is another example. The UK market has been a difficult one for the recruitment sector over recent years due to the economy and also the unnecessary new tiers of employment legislation.
“We have not rushed into this. It has taken 14 months of research, planning and development to reach the point of launch, and our patience has paid dividends in allowing us to find the very best people possible to head up the operation out in the Asia-Pacific region initially. Capturing Wyn James and Mike Otty is a real coup for us; they both come with a terrific reputation.
“The offices in Perth and Singapore are already extremely busy, and such is the response we have received on the ground from clients particularly in mining and engineering in Australia, we are hopeful that by the end of 2012 we will have opened additional offices.
“Those we are seeking to recruit through Acorn Global will not just to have the chance to earn high salaries, but can take advantage of a life-changing experience in a new country where opportunities are plentiful.
“The support for those we are hiring is paramount to us. Migration can be a complex issue and we provide all the help required with gaining 457 visas, as well as supporting workers’ families right through the application process to helping them settle into a new job and a new way of life on the other side of the world.”
During 2012, Acorn Global will be staging a series of roadshows around the UK for people interested in working abroad. For further information, visit www.acornpeople.com/global recruitment