Growing firm Great Annual Savings to invest £3m into swish new HQ

A growing North East company has revealed plans to invest £3m into its new headquarters where it plans to create hundreds of jobs.

Seaham’s Great Annual Savings Group, which was formed in 2012, helps businesses to reduce their variable costs in energy, water, telecoms, merchant services, insurance and more.

The firm, which has more than 10,000 customers across the UK and Ireland, last month announced plans to double it current headcount from 300 to 600 by the end of this year.

Now the firm – recently announced as Sunderland’s new main shirt sponsor– has announced it is quadrupling its office space after agreeing a lease on a new building on Spectrum Business Park, taking its total office space to 80,000 square feet.

And the new base will boast much more than desks for works, with plans including zen rooms, an arcade, a gym and top quality catering facilities.

The business cost saving specialist has been on a rapid growth journey since its inception in 2012, reaching 300 employees at the start of 2020 and recruiting 150 staff in the last 14 months.

After a 2015 move into the ground floor of Spectrum 6, the group is now becoming one of the region’s largest employers by adding a second floor to Spectrum 6 and taking on the whole of Spectrum 7.

The space available will provide GAS with the capacity to employ more than 1,000 people in a Covid-compliant, socially-distant working environment.

The fit-out, being provided by Ultimate Commercial Interiors Ltd, is now under way and the plan is for the business to move into the building at the end of 2020.

Brad Groves, chief executive of GAS, said the group plans to create more than just an office for colleagues.

He said: “Our new headquarters in Spectrum 7 will be one of the finest office facilities outside of London and Manchester.

“We are committing a multimillion-pound investment to create an innovative building focused on employee experience and wellbeing.

“That means more than just the latest furniture, technology and equipment. We are weaving major new benefits into the build, which will incorporate health and wellbeing facilities; a state-of-the-art catering facility; a fully-subsidised gym, studio and changing facility; an arcade; an e-gaming zone; zen rooms; speciality training and development suites and more.

“We have now recruited a group health and wellbeing manager, who will be building a skilled team to focus on the physical wellbeing elements of this.

“Additionally, we will be recruiting a market-leading team to re-develop our benefits and incentives. Their sole responsibility will be to create once-in-a-lifetime experiences for colleagues and take our work-life balance to new heights through incentives, benefits and travel.

“The second floor we have taken at Spectrum 6 is initially to allow our staff to return to the working environment in a safe way. It gives us more room to maintain a social distance and reduces demand for facilities such as toilets and kitchens. We have invested further to go above and beyond the government’s workplace guidelines for safety and are only bringing staff back into the workplace when the time is right.”

Paul Wellstead, developer of Spectrum Business Park, said: “Hot on the heels of what was Spectrum’s biggest ever letting a few months ago to Believe Housing, the new letting of Spectrum 7 to Great Annual Savings is bigger still.

“This continues the significant momentum Spectrum is achieving in the North East office market. One of the key factors for our occupiers is providing the very best in workplace environments for their colleagues.

“Occupiers understand that their staff are the number one asset to the business and providing them with a well-connected, inspirational workplace is at the top of their list of requirements.”

Mr Groves added: “Our total office space will allow us to grow to more than 1,000 people. We recently announced that we will be more than doubling in size, whether that is in our new headquarters or around the country in our field-sales division. Recruitment processes for these posts have now begun.

“At a time like this, businesses will be looking to reduce their outgoings across the board and become more efficient. This makes GAS’ services more important than ever and we need more colleagues to deliver these services to as many customers as possible.”


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