Investment from UK Steel Enterprise has enabled an award-winning Tees-based training company to acquire another business and continue an expansion aimed at tripling turnover in the next year.

Orangebox Training Solutions Ltd can now expand its employability training substantially after taking over The London School of Academies and Arts with the help of £25,000 from the Tata Steel business-support subsidiary.

The acquisition allows Orangebox to take on more government-funded training, building on its already successful involvement with Job Centres, helping unemployed people in Teesside and beyond.

In addition, the company has just secured a major contract to provide management training courses in the Middle East, Fiji, New Zealand and America for Invenio, a global IT company employing around 600 staff.

Orangebox was set up just two years ago by Simon Corbett who began his career with Durham Constabulary, worked with the National Crime Squad and National Crime Agency and trained personnel around the world.  He decided to use that expertise and experience to set up Orangebox Training at UK Steel Enterprise’s Innovation Centre at Hartlepool.

It currently provides more than 75 courses from first aid, management and communication to law enforcement, surveillance, health and safety, adult social care and retail.

“The Innovation Centre is such a good place to grow a business,” said Simon Corbett. “We have expanded into larger offices twice already and now have a team of eight and a bank of 30 freelance trainers on board.

“I am very grateful that UK Steel Enterprise has also helped with this investment which is helping us to keep moving the business forward.  We are now working globally, as well as for major employers in our home region that include local authorities, retailers, transport companies, charities, care home providers and colleges.

“To date we have helped train more than 9000 people and are now looking to a fourth year turnover of £1m.

“I believe that our strength lies in making courses effective, enjoyable and engaging. Our experienced trainers are vital to our success as training needs to be dynamic as well as cost effective for it to deliver the right results.”

Sarah Thorpe, Area Manager, UK Steel Enterprise, said: “We have watched Orangebox go from strength to strength since arriving at the Innovation Centre as a new business in 2016.   We are very pleased that we have been able to help with the larger offices they needed and also with this investment so the company can move on to the next exciting stage in its development.”

Details of UK Steel Enterprise’s support for businesses is on 01642 777 777 and  Orangebox Training Solutions is on 01429 874 530 and