UK consultancy Brickendon expands into Canada with Toronto office

06 June 2018

As the effects of Brexit threaten to hamper the performance of the British financial sector, many firms are looking to pan-Atlantic expansion in order to ensure their growth. Brickendon, a rapidly growing British consultancy, has turned its attention to Canada, opening a Toronto office to allow access to a new market, as well as bolstering its existing presence in North America.

Transformational consultancy Brickendon has grown rapidly over the past six years, recently announcing it had experienced 300% growth since 2012. As the company works to maintain its momentum, having launched just eight years ago, the consultancy has launched a new office in North America to gain a foothold in the Canadian consulting market. 

The new office in Toronto will help grow the Brickendon brand in a new market place. The development takes the London headquartered firm’s total tally of global locations to five, with new hubs having opened in Warsaw, Poland, and Raleigh, US, in 2017. The management and technology consultancy was founded in 2010 in London, and first made the jump across the Atlantic to US in the summer of 2016, arriving in the world’s financial capital of New York.

UK consultancy Brickendon expands into Canada with Toronto office

Brickendon, which specialises across five practice areas of strategy, risk & regulation, data, quality & testing and digital, is searching for new avenues through which to progress its continuing expansion plans amid a challenging market. Last year the firm targeted group-wide sales of £30 million by the close of 2017, however reports speculating that Brexit is set to shrink the financial services market by as much as 9.5% in value by 2020, along with some 75,000 jobs, suggest that growing beyond this point will rest heavily on international expansion.

The Canadian consulting market is estimated to be worth almost US$4 billion, with further growth anticipated in 2018, something the consulting industry is keen to tap into, with firms such as Sia Partners and BCG (also located in Toronto) expanding their presences in the nation as a result. With increased international reach and capabilities, Brickendon is likewise looking to translate its domestic prowess into international success. Now, having branched out to serve four markets globally, Brickendon has grown its workforce to over 100 in under five years, in order to serve almost 30 clients, including global banks, hedge funds, asset managers and FTSE 100 companies.

According to the transformational company, the firm’s unique offering acts as a springboard for reimagining the financial services sector and challenging the status quo of large consultancies. This is also reflected in Brickendon’s own gender and diversity policy; having signed the Women in Finance Charter in 2017, and remaining committed to bolstering the role women play in the male-dominated financial services industry. It already employs a number of women in senior management positions, and recently announced plans to boost this figure to 50% by the end of 2019. This commitment alone would place the firm in tune with the growing Canadian consulting market, with a drive for gender parity across the economy taking place – as a variety of studies have suggested this could improve the economy to the power of $160 billion.

Brickendon CEO Christopher Burke said of the new Toronto locale, “This is another positive step in our plans to expand the company and use our innovative solutions to transform our clients’ organisations around the world. We are excited about this great opportunity.”

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Newcastle consulting firm opens Baghdad office

05 April 2019

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.”