Movers & Shakers: Graduate duo Katherine Lawson and Annabelle Rennie join Genesis PR

Annabelle Rennie and Katherine Lawson of Genesis PR.

Annabelle Rennie and Katherine Lawson of Genesis PR. - Credit: Archant

Ipswich PR agency Genesis PR has appointed two graduates, Katherine Lawson and Annabelle Rennie, to its team of eight PR professionals.

Katherine Lawson has joined the team as a senior account executive. She graduated from De Montfort University, Leicester, with a First Class BA Honours degree in Media and Communication in 2012 and has developed her experience through a one year PR internship at the Animal Health Trust.

Katherine said: “I’ve worked in PR for a year now but I really wanted to change direction and experience the variety that comes with agency life. Although based in Suffolk, a lot of Genesis’ work is focused on national campaigns, which really appealed to me. It’s a very exciting time for Genesis and I’m very pleased to be a new part of the team.”

Annabelle Rennie has joined the Genesis team as an account executive. She graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a First Class BSc Honours degree in Criminology and Psychology and has returned to her home county of Suffolk after 10 years living abroad in Cyprus and in various parts of the UK.

Annabelle said: “I’m thrilled to begin my career at Genesis after travelling so much with my family. I’m enjoying getting thoroughly involved and developing my PR skills and knowledge. My background in criminology and psychology is something you might not expect a PR practitioner to have but psychology in particular is very relevant to communications.”

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Genesis director Penny Arbuthnot said: “In a short space of time Katherine and Annabelle have become valued members of our team and we are very pleased to have appointed two such bright and able graduates who will grow their careers with us.”

: : World food wholesale specialist Surya Foods has made three new appointments to senior positions at the group.

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David Rowland, a former category manager with Tesco, takes over as buying director at the Harwich-based firm. His appointment follows that of Derek Samuels, formerly of Grampian Country Foods, who joined Surya as operations manager in April and Graham Emery, formerly of Gerber Juice Company Ltd, who took up the position of national sccount firector in January.

The key appointments are part of Surya’s ambitious expansion plans to triple the size of its business in three years. Acquisitions and stronger management have been a key focus of the business in 2013, as it aims to compete on the same stage as mainstream British brands.

The company, which is a leading basmati rice supplier to the UK multiple trade, and has a comprehensive world foods portfolio of brands, is investing heavily in its national accounts team to further fuel its sales growth.

It also invested £3million in robotics to increase productive capacity at its Harwich HQ earlier this year.

Surya chief executive Harry Dulai said: “I am delighted to welcome David, Graham and Derek on to the team at Surya.

“All three bring expertise from mainstream businesses which is helping add an increased level of sophistication and professionalism to the group’s operations.

“Our most recent appointment, David Rowland, joins us with a wealth of experience in buying, especially with his last senior position as category manager at Tesco plc, where he has managed buying teams and a considerable array of product ranges.

“I am sure that through David’s experience in procurement he will add process and economic improvements to the business. giving the sales team the support that they need to meet the ambitious growth plans that the business has.”

Surya has also stepped up its work with agencies and this year achieved a major win, acquiring the contract to be European distribution agents for Britannia Biscuits – a billion dollar India-based business.

Established in the 1980s, Surya is a rapidly-expanding family-run business with an annual turnover of £100m and an employee base of 600. It supplies a variety of high quality, authentic ethnic products ranging from rice, flour, spices and sauces to snacks and savouries that are sold in more than 30 countries worldwide.

Surya operates from several different areas in UK, and has its distribution centres spread across Europe, as well as buying offices around the globe. Its main hub is an 11 acre site in Harwich, home to its head office and some 500,000sq ft of storage space.

: : Bury St Edmunds-based John Riley has joined regional business consultancy WLP as part of a drive to meet increasing demand for the company’s services following a successful year of growth.

The company is on track to record turnover growth of 50% compared to the last financial year.

In the past three months, John Riley and Norfolk-based Pat Powell have joined WLP as associates, taking the number of consultants to 13.

John has wide business and management experience from a career spanning 36 years with National Westminster Bank plc and as chief executive of MENTA, the Suffolk enterprise agency.

He said: “I am delighted to have joined WLP at this exciting time for the company. I look forward to using my diverse business and management experience to help other companies realise their strategic goals.”

Steve Palmer, director at WLP, said: “Each of our consultants has a unique skillset we can draw on, so we can match the most appropriate consultants to our clients based on their particular needs, ensuring that clients benefit from specialist expertise.

“John is a great addition to the team and I know our clients will greatly value his experience and counsel.

“Our growth areas include SMEs, the food industry, health and social care. With our expanding team and growing reputation we are well-equipped to meet our ambitious growth targets for the next three years and look forward to further expanding the team at this exciting time for the company.”

The company’s growth has also led to a marketing apprentice, Aidan Rayner, being taken on through the Swarm scheme, which aims to help firms take on their first apprentices, in conjunction with City College Norwich.

The company also launched a new website in November, which offers a more comprehensive and effective platform for WLP to market itself and engage with its audiences.

WLP has a track record of transforming businesses for more than 25 years. Its administrative hub is in Watton, Norfolk, with consultants based across East Anglia and the East Midlands.

The company specialises in the growth and improvement of small and medium-sized businesses and public sector organisations, primarily in East Anglia and the East Midlands, but also throughout the UK.

Clients range from household names such as British Sugar and public sector organisations such as NHS Norwich Clinical Commissioning Group to sector specialists such as Chalcroft Construction and owner-manager businesses such as Beccles-based Winter Flora.

: : A student from the Ipswich office of chartered accountants Larking Gowen has attended a special lunch in her honour after passing the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants exam.

To mark her achievement Tanya Rodwell, and other successful students, were invited to lunch as guests of Larking Gowen managing partner Jon Woolston.

“Passing this exam is a great achievement and it will, I am sure, launch Tanya on a very successful career,” said Mr Woolston. “She has shown a great deal of commitment to get where she is so it’s nice to have the chance to personally congratulate her on her success.

“Staff development and career progression are core values at Larking Gowen and I am greatly looking forward to seeing her develop her career and take on more responsibilities with us.”

: : Residential and domiciliary care provider Healthcare Homes has appointed Ed Pink as financial controller of its homecare division, Manorcourt Homecare.

Ed joins the group, based at Langham, near Colchester, where he is directly responsible for overseeing the accounting and financial management of the domiciliary care division, which has 14 branches and two day centres located across Suffolk, Norfolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire.

Ed joins the Healthcare Homes group having worked at BDO LLP as a corporate finance executive, and a senior business adviser with PKF (UK) LLP.

He said: “The Healthcare Homes group is a highly reputable, growing business and also a significant employer across the eastern counties. I am therefore very pleased to have joined the group as financial controller for its homecare division. I am looking forward to contributing towards the ongoing financial strategy as the organisation continues to expand.”

Chief financial officer Graham Lomer said: “Ed joins the business with solid experience having worked at one of the largest accountancy practices in the world. We are positive that Ed will make a constructive and valuable contribution to our business, particularly at a time when demand for our homecare services is growing.

“We’ve been careful in our search for a new financial controller and feel that we have found the right candidate in Ed.”

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