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Optionis strengthens leadership team after profits boost

The Cheshire-headquartered group has appointed Andy Hague, formerly managing director at human resources (HR) specialist Croner, as SME operations director.

Meanwhile Andy Gunson joins as finance director from industrial recruitment firm Gap Personnel, where he spent just over two years in the same role.

They join chief executive Rob Crossland, managing director Derek Kelly and operations director Ifti Ahmed on the Optionis senior management team. 

Optionis announced the appointments alongside news of its financial results for 2013/14. 

Pre-tax profits increased from &pound2.5m to &pound2.7m on turnover of &pound316m, while EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) edged up from &pound5.32m to &pound5.33m.

Net assets more than doubled from &pound5.5m to &pound11.8m.

Kelly said, “After a solid year of trading that supports our long-term strategy of sustainable growth, these two appointments will help us to take the business to the next level.

“Andy Gunson is a talented finance director who possesses first-class knowledge of the staffing industry – a key audience for us.

“At the same time Andy Hague’s experience of providing support services to small and medium-sized firms will be invaluable as we look to grow market share in that space.”

Crossland added, “It’s pleasing to be able to bring in executive team members of this calibre.  

“Our new colleagues will play a vital role as the Optionis group enters the next phase of its evolution.”

The Optionis group is home to three operating brands ClearSky Contractor Accounting, Parasol and ClearSky Business.

ClearSky Contractor Accounting, one of the UK’s 100 largest practices by fee income, specialises in providing accounting and tax advice to independent professionals who operate through their own Limited company.      

Parasol provides employment services to contractors, freelancers and skilled temporary workers, mitigating risk for the recruitment firms and hirers who work with them.

ClearSky Business is a one-stop shop for SMEs seeking fixed-fee support and advice on everything from human resources (HR) and employment law to payroll, tax and accountancy.

In January 2014 the Optionis management team completed a secondary buyout (SBO) backed by international investment firm MML Capital Partners.

The deal provided an exit for private equity firm Inflexion, which backed an original management buyout in 2006.

In addition to its two offices in Warrington, Cheshire, Optionis has bases in London, Middleton in Greater Manchester and Poole and Dorchester in Dorset – employing around 250 office-based staff in total. 



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