Point B opens new office in Austin, Texas, its 10th in US

07 October 2016 Consultancy.uk

Point B, a US-based management consultancy, has opened a new office in Austin, Texas. The new office will be led by Kelly O’Rourke, and boosts the firm’s US footprint to a total of 10 offices.

Management consulting, venture investment and property development firm Point B has opened a new office in Austin Texas. The new office, its 10th across the United States, will boost its capability to deliver healthcare, technology, retail and financial services advisory services to local clients in Texas. The new office will leverage the firm’s wider network of 600 people across the country.

Point B’s new office, which is located at One Eleven, the high-rise at 111 Congress Ave (owned by Parkway Properties), will be led by Kelly O’Rourke, who is charged with developing the strategic direction of the new hub as well as leading client engagements. O’Rourk is a local to Austin and has worked in the region for more than 15 years.

Point B opens new office in Austin, Texas, its 10th in US

O’Rourk joined Point B in 2014 as Principal in the firm’s Project Leadership Services practice. Previously, O’Rourk worked at test equipment company National Instruments as a Director within the company’s Global Business Analysis and Solutions division from 2006 until 2014, and was an IT Section Manager at the company from 2004 until 2006. Earlier in his career O’Rourk worked at Accenture, in his last role as Senior Manager in the firm’s Financial Services practice. O’Rourk holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Illinois.

On the new Austin office O’Rourke remarks, “Point B is known for getting the right things done right. Our local model – local consultants helping local companies – coupled with the ability to tap into industry experts across our firm’s more than 600 people, puts us in a great position to immediately drive value for organisations in Austin.”

The Austin team today consists of six consultants – O’Rourke expects to double the headcount by the end of 2016 and reach nearly 20 employees by the end of 2017.

Last month another consulting firm, AlixPartners, also opened an office in Texas (Houston; its 9th in the US), while PwC and Slalom Consulting opened their fourth and first hub in the wider Texas region in 2015 and 2014, respectively. Mercer, an international HR advisory, in May this year closed down one of its two offices in Houston.

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Newcastle consulting firm opens Baghdad office

05 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

A Newcastle-based consultancy has announced it will open its first office in Iraq. The news comes despite warnings that the area remains “high risk” for businesses.

16 years after the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the nation remains a shadow of its former self. The continued chaos wrought by the Iraq War – which eventually played a role in the rise to prominence of Daesh, further destabilising the region – means that even now, the nation’s capital is deemed to have the lowest quality of living in the world. According to a recent survey from Mercer, Baghdad ranked last overall – immediately below Bangui of the Central African Republic and Damascus in Syria – despite the other two being determined as the worst cities on the planet for personal safety.

However, as with the wider Middle East, the oil-rich state presents a lucrative destination to businesses willing to take the risk. To that end, a Newcastle recruitment consultancy has announced the opening of its first presence in Iraq’s capital city. Samuel Knight has taken the decision to open its Baghdad locale in order to grow its business in the Middle East.

Newcastle consulting firm opens Baghdad office

While businesses remain wary of the region, Samuel Knight specialises in recruiting talent in the energy and rail sectors, and in a release it said the new office would continue to focus on these areas. It will also allow the firm to make sure it abides by local compliance laws. The new location will be headed up by Haider Kadhim, Samuel Knight’s Iraq country manager, who will work as the first point of contact for clients and candidates. Representatives from the Department of Trade Industry are expected to attend a launch event for the office, which will be held this month.

Commenting on the new office,  a spokesperson for Samuel Knight said, “We probably don’t see it as a risk, but more of an opportunity, as we operate in the Middle East extensively already. We have contacts in place in the country location and with the consultants we have. We felt it was a great opportunity to expand into a country we are already doing work in. It means we have an on-the-ground team to help our clients. From our perspective, it is that we are looking to expand into new territories, but we are also supporting countries that are starting to redevelop after years of warfare.”

Steve Rawlingson, CEO at Samuel Knight, said, “Our aggressive five-year growth plan is manifesting at  an impressive rate, taking the company to exciting new territories. The team is working diligently to surpass expectations set out in the plan, and to ensure Samuel Knight is cemented as the leading global energy and rail recruitment specialist. Our Baghdad office will give us a distinctive edge over our competition and allow for more exciting business opportunities. Once the office becomes more established and client acquisition develops, we will certainly be adding more consultants and manpower in the city.”