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23 May 2004
Scotland on Sunday
Recruitment duo go back to the future

TWO recruitment company executives, who sold the Direct Resources agency in 1999, have bought it back for an undisclosed sum from its American parent, iGate.

Paul Atkinson and Gordon Adam will merge the business with their current recruitment consultancy, Head Resourcing, and the name Direct Resources will be dropped. The combined turnover of the new operation will be 6m.

It is understood the pair paid a significantly smaller sum to buy back the company they launched as an IT recruitment agency in 1995 and sold for 3.4m at the height of the technology market.

"The market is on the way up again, which makes it a good time to take it back," said Adam.

Direct Resources built a client base among financial services companies wanting IT staff in the run-up to the year-2000 computer changeover.

It employed 20 staff when it was sold in 1999, but this has fallen to five as Nasdaq-listed iGate, known at the time of the deal as Mastech, shifted its strategy away from recruitment. None of the five will join Head Resourcing.

Adam said he and Atkinson were attracted to buying back Direct Resources as it will include a number of significant contracts and a valuable database.

They launched Head Resourcing in 2001 as an executive search company and last year it reported a turnover of 500,000 for its first full year.

With rapid growth in the temporary contract market this has jumped to 3m.

Sandy Bell, a director, said: "Adding the Direct Resources contracts doubles our turnover and in the immediate future we will focus on cementing relationships with our new clients and contractors and recruit another two or three staff."

He said the company would not rule out further acquisitions in the medium term.

Head Resourcing is again seeing a shortage in some IT disciplines, especially for contracting jobs.

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