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Brightwork hunts acquisitions south of border

Anthony KnightBrightwork Group, the Glasgow and Edinburgh based recruitment specialist, has revealed plans to acquire companies in England after investing significantly in the business last year.

Bottom line profit took a hit following a capital outlay on staff but planned expansion will enable the company to double its profits by 2017, it said.

Anthony Knight, managing director, said: “We are in the process now of planning some key strategic changes in the business which we believe will enhance significantly our ability to grow further, both organically and as a result of acquisitions which are very likely to be of businesses based south of the border, ideally in the care, catering and facilities sectors.

“Our investment in people is a medium-term play as we grow the business, and we expect it to pay-off for us in the coming years.

“We needed to invest in infrastructural functions such as human resources, marketing, training and development and central corporate sales last year.”

He said the company was pleased with the progress at Quality Link Recruitment (QLR), the Scottish staffing and event management service which it acquired in 2013.

“We have enhanced significantly Brightwork’s offering to the catering and hospitality sectors,” said Mr Knight. “At the same time we have learned a great deal about how best to make acquisitions work successfully and, as a result, our aim continues to be a doubling of pre-tax profits by the end of 2017.”

Gross profit leapt 9.8% to £4.02 million on a 3.6% rise in turnover to £32.65m in the year to December 2014. Spending on headcount, support staff, training and marketing, saw pre-tax profit fall 14.1% to £916,000 compared to £1.059m in 2013.

The group, which saw the payroll rise from 52 to 60 over the year, was established in 2006. Since then it has established itself in drinks and industrial recruiting.

It has also built up a thriving specialist recruitment arm, BWSR, focusing on the professional, technical and managerial sectors. Turnover in this division has risen substantially since its inception in 2008.

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