One of the most high profile figures in Birmingham's professional services sector, Richard Boot, has joined two senior recruitment consultants, formerly with KPMG, in founding their own executive search and selection consultancy targeting the cream of UK company bosses.
Mr Boot, who together with Stephen Bryan and Bernard Grant have launched Active Human Capital, is looking to grow the business quickly - adding to their team of consultants and acquiring other high level consultancies.
He said: "Our blue chip clients include a number of leading plcs which has given us a flying start. However, our business plan targets rapid growth and we are firmly on the acquisition trail as well as looking to attract more of the right people into the company."
Active Human Capital, which has offices in Birmingham and London, delivers recruitment and assessment services at executive and board level, including non-executives, focusing on high-achievers with salaries of £75,000 and above.
Mr Boot, a shareholder and chairman of the new company, is a national council member of the Institute of Directors and was a key player in growing the IoD in Birmingham.
He is also a regional chairman of Coutts & Co private bank, a director of Europackaging Group and of Ryland Group, and a former partner in KPMG's consulting and corporate finance units.
Mr Bryan, who is managing director of Active Human Capital, and Mr Grant, a director, both held senior positions until recently with KPMG. The former was director of KPMG Search & Selection, while the latter was a principal consultant there for more than ten years.
When the global audit, tax and advisory group closed its executive recruitment operations in March this year, they saw it as an opportunity not a blow.
Mr Bryan said: "KPMG's decision was a strategic one. Recruitment consultancy did not fit with its strategy so it withdrew from the market.
" It means that Active Human Capital has that rare but valuable combination - it is driven by the energy and ambition of a new company but has 30 years experience behind it. We are new maturity on the block."
As well as seeking to identify and place "high-fliers" in the corporate finance and professional service sectors, and in consumer and industrial markets, the company provides consultancy on board competency and effectiveness, and management performance.
A number of issues currently high on the executive recruitment agenda include security of employment, availability of the right talent and assessment of competence.
Mr Bryan went on: "As organisations need to change in response to today's challenging market conditions, you have to be able to assess your team and recruit the very best people to help your business stay ahead.
"It is the people in your company that is the essence of the differentiation between you and your competitors, which is where Active Human Capital comes in."