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North Tyneside firms cement deal with duel


May 15, 2017

Two long-established North Tyneside companies have formalised a strategic partnership in an unusual way, by taking part in a fencing duel at Newcastle Fencing Centre.

Civil engineering outfit, the Owen Pugh Group and IT solutions provider, Perfect Image took part in a team building afternoon at the flagship sporting venue to mark the beginning of an exciting new partnership.  The collaboration will see North East-based Perfect Image take over the full management of Owen Pugh’s IT services and software requirements.

Eleven employees from across the two businesses stepped up to the piste during the event at the Benfield Business Park based facility, which was designed to further integrate the teams.

Under the guidance of the centre’s head coach Iain Aberdeen, the swordsmen received one-on-one tuition before taking part in a friendly competition with each employee fighting four members of the opposing team.

The event formalises a three-year deal which will see Cobalt Business Park based Perfect Image provide a complete IT service across Owen Pugh’s group of businesses.  The remit covers everything from strategic input into software plans for the civil engineering giant, to day-to-day management of the company’s PCs and networks.  As well as ensuring that the existing IT systems run smoothly, Perfect Image will work with the Owen Pugh management team to ensure the systems are continuously improved and fully aligned with the needs of the business.

Owen Pugh has seen significant expansion in recent years and now employs over 400 staff from five sites across the North East including its head office in Dudley.  Having outsourced aspects of its work over the past five years, Owen Pugh made the decision to hand over full responsibility for its IT services provision to the neighbouring firm in a response to the growing complexity of the group’s IT provision, together with the increased criticality of the IT function to the running of the business.

John Dickson, chairman and managing director of Owen Pugh, says: “It is clear that class leading IT is not only critical to the performance of our business, it also underpins and in some cases drives innovation and improvement in productivity.  Perfect Image, with whom we have worked successfully over a number of years, have the capability not only to look after all our day-to-day hardware and software needs, but also to help shape our IT strategy in response to the changing needs of the business.  We share a relationship of trust and confidence, as demonstrated by our ability to fight on the piste and remain friends.”

Dickson, who is also a trustee of Newcastle Fencing and Sports Trust which established Newcastle Fencing Centre, says the fencing event was a fitting way to formalise the partnership and coincides with the facility launching corporate teambuilding events.

He said: “The Olympic sport of fencing requires focus, strategy and tactics, all vital skills in the business world, so what better way to mark Owen Pugh’s partnership with Perfect Image than to get to know each other better with a friendly competition at the fantastic Newcastle Fencing Centre.  The teams had a fun afternoon and came away feeling motivated and ready for business.”

Over the past 25 years Perfect Image has established itself as a major IT player in the region due to its track-record in designing and supporting cloud, traditional and hybrid IT systems.  The company enjoys close working relationships with a range of key technology providers, including Microsoft and Amazon Web Services.

Commenting on the strategic partnership with Owen Pugh, Andrew Robson CEO of Perfect Image, said: “We’re delighted to be working with Owen Pugh who are a well-known and well-respected local firm.  We had a great time at the fencing centre and even managed to take a few points off their team, but our target now is to work in close partnership and point them in the right direction with their IT in the future.”

Newcastle Fencing Centre was established by Newcastle Fencing and Sports Trust in 2014 and is the largest and most well-equipped facility outside of London.  Boasting 12 fixed pistes, a state-of-the-art electronic scoring system and video analysis technology, it has become a flagship sporting venue for the North East. It is home to Newcastle Fencing Club and supports some 200 amateur and professional fencers each week.

The facility is accessible to people of all abilities and has recently introduced corporate teambuilding packages. For further information contactenquiries@newcastlefencingsportstrust.org or visit the website www.newcastlefencingsportstrust.org

For further information about Owen Pugh visit: www.owenpugh.com and for Perfect Image visit: www.perfect-image.co.uk

By Emily