Buck Consultants International opens office in Atlanta

05 January 2016 Consultancy.uk

Buck Consultants International will open its fifth international location at the start of 2016, in Atlanta – the US. The new office will allow the consulting firm to improve its ability to advise US firms on their international expansion.

Buck Consultants International (BCI), a Dutch headquartered consulting firm, is one of the largest players on the market specialised in site selection and supply chain issues, with around 65 professionals working from five offices in Europe – the Netherlands, Belgium, France, German and the United Kingdom.

Recent years have seen the firm support dozens of North American businesses with their expansion into Europe. In 2013, the firm advised Donaldson, a filter producer, about its choice to locate its air filter factory in Skarbimierz (Poland), while last year, law firm Hogan Lovells and machine producer GSI, among others, were supported in their location strategy trajectories. To arrive at its key advice to its clients, the firm factors in a holistic set of location conditions, including geographic location, accessibility, employment costs and the tax laws of the various locations.

Buck Consultants International opens office in Atlanta

Consultancy advice for American businesses that are expanding to Europe and Asia now accounts for 40% to 50% of the firm’s total revenue, says founder and director René Buck; with expectations that more American clients will be seeking similar expansion plans. As the world economy strengthens further, businesses are increasingly turning to international expansion, particularly in the US: “The US remains the largest investor outside its domestic market,” says Buck, and predicts that the Americans will increase their international activities in the coming years.

To better serve the market, Buck, who last year joined the prestigious ‘Site Selectors Guild’, together with his partners – BCI has seven shareholders as partners working at the firm – decided to open an office in the US. “The closer we are to our customers, the better,” says Buck. Atlanta became the city of choice for the new office, Buck says about the strategic move that, “from here we can be at the major centres such as Boston and Silicon Valley quickly”, he adds that one of Atlanta’s key features is access to a large (international) airport.

To lead the activities of BCI in the US, the firm has attracted Allison Turner (51), a veteran in the field of international direct investment and trade. Turner worked for the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency for the past 15 years, where she was responsible for helping South East US companies expand their operations into the Netherlands. In the role Turner, who holds an MBA from the Erasmus University Rotterdam, worked with among others for the Port of Rotterdam Authority and Nissan. “It’s a wonderful challenge to expand the activities of BCI in the US market,” says Turner, who has been appointed Vice-President North America.


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.”