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Movers & Shakers: East of England Business Champions award for Lee Collis of APC

PUBLISHED: 06:00 08 February 2013

Lee Collis of APC with his regional award

Lee Collis of APC with his regional award


KELVEDON-based APC Solutions is celebrating awards success after its technical project manager Lee Collis scooped Employee of the Year at the prestigious East of England Business Champions Awards.

APC’s group sales director David Bell was also shortlisted for Business Person of the Year.

The last two years, the business has grown from a local Essex-based business to a global wireless communications company with satellite offices in Cape Town, South Africa and Ohio, North America.

APC is also set to expand further in 2013 with projects secured in Qatar in the Middle East.

: :GROWING precision engineering firm Warren Services, based in Thetford, has welcomed Christian Deas as technical design manager to heading its new design facility.

“I have been in engineering for nearly 25 years now, starting as an aeronautical technician apprentice at the now defunct British Aerospace site at Hatfield in Herts,” said Christian.

“When the site closed I worked for my parents’ engineering business working on the shop floor learning CNC programming and setting, component assembly and finishing before moving into a design and technical sales position travelling all over the world designing products for major fibre optic telecommunications companies.

“I have worked in various local companies designing components for the white goods, automotive, scientific instruments, converting machinery and compressed air sectors.”

Warren Services is a family owned and run, ISO 9001:2008 certified business, offering a wide range of engineering services including CNC machining; laser, water and EDM wire cutting; welding; fabrication; painting; and mechanical and electrical assembly for a variety of industries including stage automation; oil and gas; and specialist vehicles sectors.

“To complete the manufacturing package, I was brought on board to set up a design office offering new product design (NPD); design of jigs and fixtures; special purpose machines and equipment; and also value engineering,” said Christian.

“As markets become more competitive, there is a greater requirement to reduce manufacturing costs. This comes down to product design, mainly design for manufacture (DFM) and design for assembly (DFA). We will be able to work closely with companies to help ‘re-engineer’ their products to make them more cost effective to manufacture, reducing part count, manufacturing times and material wastage.

“Since starting the design office this year, Warren’s scope for its BSI certification to ISO 9001:2008 has already been extending to cover design services. I hope to take on more design staff as this part of the business grows, starting with a design apprentice.

“As an ex-apprentice I feel that the best way to learn a trade is through an apprenticeship. You are paid to learn and gain the necessary hands-on experience which is invaluable.”

: : CLYDESDALE Bank has announced a new business and private banking team for East Anglia.

Andrew Pike has been appointed as head of regional business and private banking, responsible for Clydesdale Bank’s operations from the Bury St Edmunds Business and Private Banking Centre.

To support Andrew, the bank has also made the following senior appointments: Matthew Long and Kevin Osborne, relationship managers – commercial banking; Nicholas Hunt, relationship manager – agribusiness; and Terri Christian, relationship manager – private banking

Andrew Pike said: “We have developed a team in East Anglia that is recognised for its ability and experience in working with businesses of all sizes to really understand their needs, the challenges they face, and what support we can offer.

“We are looking forward to supporting new and existing businesses as they grow and continue to play an important part in the East Anglian economy.”

Andrew Merrifield, Clydesdale Bank’s regional director for business and private banking in the east, said: “Andrew and the new team in East Anglia are all highly respected within the business community for their experience and genuine dedication to working with successful and growing businesses.

“Their appointments are an illustration of the bank’s commitment to businesses in East Anglia.”

: : ANDY Wright has been appointed network regional director for Barclays, eastern region.

Andy has worked for Barclays for 35 years and was, until recently, the network regional director for Barclays in the north east.

Andy started his career with Barclays straight from school in Leeds and has gained valuable experience throughout his career working across many business areas, including the branch network, business banking and Premier.

In his new role, he will have overall responsibility for all the staff and branches in eastern Region.

Andy said: “Leading a team of people presents a wonderful opportunity for me personally and professionally and I am delighted to be supporting Barclays strategy of empowering local branch managers and staff to make the right decisions for their customers.”

: : NICHOLAS Wicks has launched Badger Fuels Limited, a third generation heating oil company based in Ipswich and Sudbury.

Nicholas has more than 30 years’ experience in the industry, working with his father at Ballingdon Fuel Co Ltd through the 80s and 90s, and successfully selling his own company, Arctic Fuel Co Ltd, in 2007,

Nicholas said: “Buying heating oil today is a very different experience to my father’s day, with spiralling costs, increased thefts and an ever tighter squeeze on our pockets, I believe we now offer a real alternative by allowing customers to buy below the old metaphoric ‘stone wall’ 500 litre minimum order which has been in place since the 1960s.”

Zsa-Zsa Sparrow joins as company secretary, bringing a wealth of experience to Badger Fuels Ltd, with her administration office management skills.

: : IPSWICH-based medical device research firm Creative Medical Research (CMR) has appointed Alper Hulusi as research director.

Primarily a qualitative specialist, Alper has extensive high profile experience across both the public and private sectors.

Having been in the industry for more than 16 years he is looking forward to the challenge of driving research activities at CMR, which is based at Orion Business Park, Great Blakenham.

“The research CMR carries out within the field of medical devices plays a vital role in improving the working lives of health care professionals, and the lives and treatment of millions of people across the world. I’m delighted to be involved in such an important area of market research,” he said.

Managing director George Ashford said: “Having worked on some very exciting projects for some of the UK’s top agencies, Alper is a valuable addition to our growing team.

“He brings with him significant expertise across a range of techniques and will strengthen CMR’s offering in both the qualitative and quantitative service areas.

“He has established a strong reputation for undertaking high quality research amongst a diverse range of populations. With a keen focus on methodological rigour, his strengths include researching ‘sensitive issues’, vulnerable respondents and minority communities as well as senior professionals in government, healthcare and commercial settings.

“His experience aligns well with the CMR ethos and we’re pleased to have him on board,” he added.

Founded in 2000 and recently identified by Plimsoll as one of the five fastest growing UK medical research companies, CMR provides the market research that gives medical device companies the imaginative insight they need to develop new products.


The devastated mother of a teenage girl killed in a crash on the A47 in Suffolk has paid tribute to her daughter, who she has described as being “beautiful inside and out”.

The parents and sister of a Weeley man killed during the Bataclan massacre in Paris two years ago have spoken of their “unspeakable sadness” after last night’s Manchester Arena bombing.

Sir Roger Moore, the longest serving James Bond, from 1973 to 1984, has died of cancer, aged 89, his family has announced..

Two new low-cost retail stores are coming to Bury St Edmunds, as a long redundant site is brought back into use.

The full list of award winners, including glory for Suffolk and North Essex, was unveiled at the Chelsea Flower Show, today.

Police are working to establish whether suspected Manchester bomber Salman Abedi was working alone or as part of a wider network as more victims of last night’s attack are named.

A Colchester man accused of hiring a hitman to kill his stepfather over a inheritance row had no “financial or emotional motive” to carry it out, a court heard.

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