A Melbourne-headquartered environmental consultancy which has successfully completed hundreds of projects in Australia, Asia, Africa, South America, North America and the Pacific, has chosen Bristol as its British and European base.
Earth Systems is a dynamic and multi-disciplinary environmental consulting firm that develops and implements innovative environment, water and sustainability solutions. The company has eight offices in six countries across Australia, Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. It provides specialist advice and hands-on support in areas including water management and treatment, environmental management and impact assessments, natural resource development, waste management, energy and carbon, climate change, sustainability and environmental information.
Earth Systems clients are diverse in both size and nature and include private companies, government departments and international aid agencies. The company actively collaborates with organisations from both the private and public sectors.
With a proven track record of successful project delivery around the world the company’s intention was to bring this expertise to the UK and Europe.
Beth England, who is an Environmental Consultant at Earth Systems and who is heading up the Bristol office explains the thinking behind establishing the UK base: “Earth Systems tends to establish new offices in new countries through an organic process primarily led by the location of its specialists. After several years of working for the company in Australia I wanted to return to the UK which fitted neatly with the company’s long term aspirations to establish a UK presence. Setting up in Britain was a bit of a daunting prospect, but with the help of UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) things went a lot smoother than I anticipated.
“I was first introduced to Majella Hamilton, who works for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Melbourne. She in turn put me in touch with South West-based UKTI Investment Adviser Gary Chambers. Gary offered significant support throughout the process including help reviewing potential locations, organising viewings of various offices and putting us in touch with the accountants, lawyers, bankers and other advisers we needed to speak to.”
Originally heralding from Cheltenham and knowing the South West region well, Beth believed Earth Systems could be based in Bristol. She explains:
“The nature of the business is such that our clients are widely spread geographically. Given that many of our clients are national and indeed global and that some of our workload will be too, our experience has shown that we do not need to have a specific geographical base. As such we opted for a location which supports a good work/life balance, which is important to us as a company. This combined with the city’s Enterprise Zone and its growing reputation for its environmental services network made Bristol a clear choice.”
Although the UK office will focus on European clients it will not do so exclusively, as specialists typically work on suitable projects rather than being entirely constrained by geographical remit.
Earth Systems Bristol office, based in Citypoint, Temple Gate, opened in January 2012 employing three staff. The team is in the process of establishing new clients, building their marketing strategy, working with colleagues in Head Office and working with the wider network to identify new opportunities. They have already brought in chargeable work for the UK office, are in the process of building relationships with larger companies and organisations and are looking to increase team size as the work grows.
Earth Systems is still in talks with UKTI and have signed up to its Business Services website, as well as recently attending a UKTI ‘Aid Funded Business seminar’; an area Earth Systems is keen to explore. They are also reviewing potential international trade missions and other networking opportunities.
Beth continued: “Our plans for 2012 are to become a name which clients and other consultants recognise and associate with high quality work and to cement our links across our global offices to provide a full range of environmental services to clients within our core target areas. We will be looking to deliver more innovative methods of assessment and problem solving for some of the key issues affecting us today.
“In the UK specifically we are looking to provide high quality specialist skills to both the mining sector as well as other areas. Our strength lies in the specialisms that we carry within Earth Systems and our partnerships with other high quality consultancies which all help us to deliver quality solutions. We plan to build on this throughout 2012.”
PUBLICATION: UKTI 13 April 2012