Nottingham-based Focus Consultants opens new office in Newark

25 July 2018

A Nottingham-headquartered consultancy has opened a new office following a boost to business across the region. Focus Consultants has opened an additional office in Newark, after the firm won a number of new contracts in the area.

Founded in 1994, Focus Consultants are a medium sized enterprise with approximately 60 staff operating out of offices in Nottingham, Leicester, London and Lincolnshire.  The firm focuses on funding & economic development, project management, chartered surveying and energy consulting, and boasts an annual turnover of more than £4 million. The firm is pursuing plans for future growth, the latest chapter of which has seen Focus open a new office in the Midlands.

The consulting firm’s new base is in Newark-on-Trent, following the business’ appointment as quantity surveyor for the proposed conservation and repair work due to be undertaken at Newark Castle. Focus is also working as a project manager on the £3 million Southwell Minster Leaves of Southwell project, a National Lottery-funded project aimed at protecting and better presenting the late 13th century stone carvings of plants, animals and green men which decorate the Minster’s Chapter House. Alongside this, Focus is undertaking work on a number of housing projects in Newark and Balderton, as well as a range of NHS projects in Grantham, Boston and Lincoln.

Nottingham-based Focus Consultants opens new office in Newark

The new office, based at Beacon Hill Office Park, is next door to Focus’ sister company, Midland Energy Services, in which Focus acquired a controlling interest in 2016. The Newark locale is Focus’ fifth branch, and will be led by chartered surveyor Chris Smith, who has been promoted to Associate at the firm.

Focus Partner Kevin Osbon, also a Director of MES, said, of the move, "We are very pleased to be launching our fifth office for Focus Consultants, as the company continues to expand. It will allow us to forge closer ties with MES, working together for the benefit of our clients, particularly in areas of compliance such as ‘rights of light’ and party wall surveying. The new office in Newark will also be the perfect base from which to handle the growing number of high-profile contract appointments that Focus has won in the locality. The Focus team would like to congratulate Chris Smith on his promotion and new role, and we look forward to increasing our business presence within the Newark area."

Focus joins a number of consultancies looking to expand in the broader Nottinghamshire area. Engineering consultancy Howard Ward Associates opened a new Nottingham office in March 2018, while fellow engineering firm Travis Baker doubled the size of its Nottingham office in the spring.

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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.”