Management Buyout of OA Group

OA are delighted to announced an off-market management buyout as part of our ongoing strategy for continued growth.


With over 400 clients across the UK, Osborne Appointments (trading as OA Group) was founded in 1995 and specialises in offering permanent recruitment, temporary workers, and bespoke talent solutions for the Industrial, Manufacturing, Business Services, Commercial, Warehousing, and Logistics industries.  The company's two trading divisions, OA Recruitment and OA Solutions, both focus on providing high-volume staffing services to fast-moving industries and generated top-line growth of 74% in 2022.  Collectively, OA employs more than 50 people across nine national branches and onsite client locations across the United Kingdom.  


The deal, led by Managing Director Laura Clark and Chairman John O’Sullivan, will see Laura acquire 100% of the shareholding from the founding director and CEO Michelle Bacon.  


Since her appointment as Managing Director in 2020, Laura has been responsible for driving the OA Group’s growth with the launch of their dedicated talent solutions division, which now accounts for half of the group’s annual earnings. Following significant investment in headcount since 2021, both operating divisions are forecasting to achieve strong revenue growth in 2023.   



Laura Clark commented: “Completing the MBO will enable the business to expedite the next stage of our ambitious growth plans. I believe that we have a unique opportunity to solidify OA’s position as the UK's leading provider of high-performing, tailored recruitment, and talent solutions, expand the scope of services offered to our loyal and growing client base, while also enhancing the long-term career opportunities of all our employees.

Michelle and I have worked exceptionally hard to create a business and culture that has set itself apart from other recruitment businesses, and the company is now in a strong position to continue scaling even further. I’d also like to give a heart-felt thank you to Michelle for all her hard work and dedication over the past 27 years, and laying the foundations of what will be the next thrilling chapter in our company’s development.”   



OA Group chairman John O’Sullivan commented: “I’ve been fortunate to have worked closely with both Michelle and Laura since they first joined recruitment growth advisory network Elite Leaders, which I chair, back in 2017. I was immediately captivated by their drive and resolve to scale their business and had no hesitation in accepting their offer to join them as their chairman in 2020. Over the past 3 years, I have thoroughly enjoyed working alongside them both and supporting them to develop, design, and deliver the key strategies that have seen them dominate their market share and propelled the business to new heights. 

Laura and Michelle’s passions for excellence and the well-being of their people is infectious, and I am very proud that myself, and Elite Leaders’ advisors and industry expert partners have been able to play a part in their incredible success story.”


Michelle Bacon, who will be exiting the business following the MBO commented: "I’m filled with immense pride to have led and enabled the remarkable journey of OA, working alongside with some truly amazing employees, leaders, clients and candidates along the way. I still find it hard to believe that it has been almost 27 years since we opened our doors as a small and modest recruiting agency, and after witnessing the pace in which we’ve scaled in recent years, I believe it’s time for Laura and the new leadership team to continue the company's forward momentum.  I strongly believe that with Laura and her team at the helm, their ambitions, and strategies to scale and expand both OA’s recruitment and talent solutions divisions will firmly put OA Group on the map.”   


As a result of the MBO, Laura will assume the position of Group CEO and work alongside Chairman John O’Sullivan with a newly formed executive board consisting of Natasha Holek - Director of OA Recruitment, Karen Dobson - Director of OA Solutions, Faye Etherton - Group Financial Controller and Chris Cranshaw as Non-Executive Director.