Private Equity Backing For Apprenticeships Provider
A Leeds-based provider of IT, digital and technology apprenticeships, which also operates in Manchester and London, is targeting expansion into Birmingham after securing investment from Palatine Private Equity.
Estio Training offers ten different apprenticeship programmes, including data analyst, infrastructure technician and software developer roles. It currently has more than 750 apprentices on programme across its Leeds, Manchester and London sites.
The private equity firm has marked the third investment from its £100m Impact Fund by taking a stake in the business.
Estio is now planning to expand its geographic reach with a new Birmingham facility, and is targeting an increase the number of apprentices in training to more than 2,000 over the next three years.
The company is in the process of doubling the size of its Leeds office and has plans to expand existing facilities in Manchester and London. Its headcount, which currently stands at 120, is expected to more than double.
Robert Turner, Director at Estio, said: “The strong underlying demand for apprentices has been further boosted by the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy in April 2017, which has had a huge impact on our business. We have ambitious plans to expand our geographical reach and strengthen our existing sites to accommodate more growth and see Palatine as a perfect fit for the business.
“Beth and team took the time to understand Estio and its ambitions, and have seen our potential to become the leading provider of digital and technology apprenticeships in the country.”
Palatine Private Equity’s Impact Fund is a £100m investment vehicle targeting growth companies that also have a positive social and/or environmental impact. The deal was led by partner and head of the Impact Fund Beth Houghton and investment director James Gregson.
Houghton added: “Estio offers high quality technical training to people of all ages, and its programmes serve as a real alternative to university studies. The UK is suffering from a major skills gap in the IT and digital industry, and Estio is training and upskilling the next generation of workers in order to address this.
“The firm has already established a reputation for quality training in the North of England, with facilities in both Leeds and Manchester. Our goal is to grow the business on a national scale, with new facilities in Birmingham and London. We’re proud to support the team at Estio, and we’re looking forward to working with them towards achieving their ambitious targets.”