A COUNTY Durham based training and education company has strengthened its position as one of the UK’s largest training providers by acquiring another provider.

Learning Curve Group, which is headquartered in Spennymoor, has completed the acquisition of Acorn Training Consultants Ltd from Babington.

Acorn, based in Ripley, Derbyshire, delivers professional training to young people to help develop their skills and reach their potential through a range of study programmes and traineeships. They are at the heart of their local community also offering employment support programmes for people aged 19 to 65.

Learning Curve Group delivers education and training courses nationally, supporting more than 4,500 businesses with workplace training and in excess of 160,000 learners to gain nationally recognised qualifications each year.

The Northern Echo:

Brenda McLeish, chief executive officer at Learning Curve Group, said: “We are delighted that Acorn will become part of LCG as we continue to grow as one of the UK’s biggest training providers.

“The acquisition represents a perfect fit as both organisations share similar learner-centred values, and it presents new, exciting opportunities to our learners and employer partners, adding to our combined breadth of provision.

“With youth unemployment being at an all-time high due to the impact of Covid-19, this acquisition will allow us to support even more young people into work.

“I’m excited by the opportunities ahead and look forward to welcoming our new learners to the LCG family.”

Rachel Kayes, from Acorn, said: “This is a fantastic step for Acorn Training and we are very pleased to have found a great new home at Learning Curve Group who are in a perfect position to take the business forward and support our employers and learners.

“We’re very proud of the impact we have made as we’ve supported individuals with impactful training and Learning Curve Group’s vision to Transform Lives Through Learning is a vision we share. We know that our learners will be well supported as we move through this acquisition.”

Babington chief executive David Marsh said: “We are really pleased to have found such a great home for Acorn with Learning Curve Group, who are one of the best organisations in the 16 to 18 Education sector.

“We are very proud of how we have supported and grown Acorn since acquiring it in 2017, supporting many learners across the country.

“The sale of Acorn really helps Babington to now be able to focus on its core strategy and target market.

“We would like to thank all the staff in Acorn for their hard work and dedication and wish them and Learning Curve Group all the best for the future.”

All Acorn staff will be employed by Learning Curve Group, resulting in the expansion of their headcount of more than 500 staff.

The acquisition forms part of Learning Curve Group’s ambitious strategic growth plans, which also included the acquisition of the London Hairdressing Apprenticeship Academy and its counterpart London Beauty Training Academy earlier this year.