Business Wales: Entrepreneurship Wales: Awards Pile Up for Welsh Recruitment Firm; ACORN: Turnover Soars to Pounds 23m in Eight Years

Article excerpt

Byline: WILL SMALE

BEING recognised as the most outstanding recruitment company in Britain has capped a remarkable 10 years' trading for Acorn Recruitment.

Launched in Newport in 1992, the business has grown to become Wales's largest recruitment and training specialist, with offices across Wales and the north-west of England.

Turnover last year was pounds 23.4m and just a few days ago managing director Matt Southall was presented with the Welsh Excellence in Growth award, sponsored by Welsh Fast Growth 50 initiative, at the annual The Western Mail Welsh Business Awards.

The honour followed an award ceremony in London earlier in the year, the recruitment industry's annual Oscars, where Acorn was named best UK regional recruitment firm in the Recruiter 2002 awards and collected the Gold Award, presented to the outstanding British company of the year out of all 14 award categories.

``It's not only good news for Acorn Recruitment to be recognised as the best in the industry, but it is also a great reflection on the Welsh business community,'' said Mr Southall.

``We all know that Wales can and does produce leading companies but sometimes I think we all need reminding of that. Awards help reinforce that belief and are also extremely beneficial for the staff who work so hard throughout the year.''

Mirroring efforts by bodies such as the National Assembly, Welsh Development Agency and Elwa (Education and Learning Wales) to foster a more entrepreneurship culture in Wales, Acorn has itself diversified and expanded into new services and regions.

One of Acorn's successful ventures has been the launch of its dedicated and fully accredited training division in the late 1990s. It has achieved major success in the delivery of structured training programmes endorsed by the EMTA Awards Limited (EAL), City of Guilds of London Institute (C&G) and NEBS Management. …