Data consultancy secures £500,000 funding to meet growing demand

A data consultancy which has more than doubled in size in the past two years has raised £500,000 from NPIF – Mercia Debt Finance, which is managed by Mercia and is part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund.

Oakland Group Services has increased staff numbers from 33 to 80 since 2021 and plans to create 20 more jobs this year to meet the demand from customers.

It provides a full range of data services including strategy and governance, data analytics and insights and cloud-based platforms.

The Leeds-based company works with major brands including Vodafone, Blenheim Palace and Network Rail.

It has recently completed a data platform for London-based Femtech company Elvie, which makes smart devices such as breast pumps.

The firm is currently working on large data programme with Yorkshire Water to help with customer engagement, leak management and other improvements, following a number of successful previous projects.

Oakland was founded by Professor John Oakland from Bradford Management School, who is the current chair and who has over 35 years’ experience providing consultancy services to help companies with quality management and process improvements.

Since 2019, the business has focused on data consultancy and demand has grown steadily.

Richard Corderoy, managing director, said: “We hear a lot about the value of data but unless companies can access it in the right way, they will never feel the benefits.

“At Oakland we can help them to bring their data together in one place, ensure it is good quality and analyse it to provide insights to improve customer engagement and efficiency.

“This funding will enable us to help more companies and create more jobs.”

David Wright, investment manager with Mercia, added: “Businesses now recognise that harnessing the power of data is key to their success because it provides the insights they need to adapt and thrive in the changing marketplace.

“Data platforms are becoming a ‘must have’ for many firms, but few have the ability to create them themselves.

“Not surprisingly, Oakland’s services are in growing demand. We are pleased to be able to support Richard and the team by providing additional working capital to help them take on new and larger contracts as they continue to grow the business.”

Keira Shepperson at British Business Bank, said: “Data is an essential commodity that can transform the way businesses operate and can deliver them a competitive advantage in their industries.

“Oakland’s success reflects an awakening to the value of data analytics, and to top it off, they’re also creating new jobs at the same time.

“Yorkshire is a thriving region and we’re seeing swathes of fast-growing businesses emerging, brining economic benefits to the North as a whole.”

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