A few months ago, Focus started up its very own Penny Farthing Club. After eccentrically taking to the Brighton promenade, they recently headed over to Steyning Leisure Centre for some more training on the vintage bicycles.
Comms Vision is the event of the year for a telecoms entrepreneur! Each November Chris & Ralph head to Gleneagles, one of the most desirable destinations in the UK, for Comms Vision 2014.
With its blend of high level thought leadership presentations, challenging panel debates and director level networking it has become the 'must attend' event for senior directors of the UK's IT and Communications channel companies. Although with Chris & Ralph enjoying a round of golf or two, we aren’t entirely convinced it’s the lectures that draw them in.hide
Driving to work dressed as a serial killer isn’t the most usual start to a Friday, but since it’s Halloween a few dark enthusiasts provided some office entertainment for the day.
Focus Group are is in their 10th year of business, and what better way to celebrate a birthday than throw a party?
On the 10th October (10th of the 10th of course) the Focus staff and suppliers were invited to a party held at the Grand Hotel in Brighton. There was a champagne reception, followed by a live band! There was also a photo booth, casino tables and of course plenty of alcohol.
Ralph, one of the co-owners commented - ‘the company wouldn’t be where it was today if it wasn’t for the strong team of employees we have at Focus, as well as celebrating 10 years of the Group, we also wanted to thank our staff.’
Focus took part in the Gamma Ball Rally at the weekend- organised by one of our major suppliers. The event raised over £95,000 for two chosen charities which split is 50/50- ATE Ghana, which helps children get access to education and Honeypot, a charity helping vulnerable children and young carers.
Focus entered 2 teams – 'Jaguar Skills' and 'The Mavericks', who had to make their way to Dublin in a car of their choice - costing no more than £500. The 30 teams taking part did challenges along the way including go karting and track racing, and ended the trip with a black tie dinner and auction.
Sarah Gardner for ATE said 'we are a very young charity, only starting up 18 months ago, so to receive such a huge donation will make a wonderful difference to the work we do in Ghana'.
Ralph Gilbert from Focus Group said 'it was a brilliant few days, we hope more and more people will become involved each year to help raise money for what are great causes'.
The annual Chestnut Tree House Golf Day fundraiser took place last week at the East Sussex National Golf Course. Focus entered 3 players into the day - Luke Hunt, Director of our Network Services division and Chris & Ralph, company owners.
The day kicked off with breakfast followed by a 18 holes of golf, an evening of entertainment and a charity auction, but the real highlight of the day was when Chris Goodman got a hole in one on the 8th hole, which had a par of 3. Ecstatic doesn't quite cut it as a description for how Chris reacted when he realised he had hit a hole in one!
Fundraiser Hannah from Chestnut Tree House said "It created quite a buzz around the dinner tables that evening". All in all a great day and most importantly, over £11,000 was raised for Chestnut Tree House, the only children's hospice in Sussex, which cares for over 300 children and young adults from 0-19 years of age with progressive life-shortening conditions from East and West Sussex, Brighton & Hove City, Portsmouth City and South East Hampshire.
We're pleased to take this opportunity to welcome Brightel Datanet customers to the Focus Group. We recently acquired the client base of Brightel Datanet, who specialise in reselling telephone systems based just 15 minutes away in Brighton. Whilst Brightel will continue to trade under its own name, they will be adding all of the Focus Group products to its portfolio.hide
On Saturday, Chris Goodman kindly hosted the annual Focus Summer Party.
Every year Focus Group thank their staff by hosting a summer garden party at the bosses house.
Thankfully the rain held off for the entire day in Upper Beeding, so everyone could enjoy the festivities which included inflatables, archery, live music, a hectic game of rounders a BBQ and plenty of drinks were consumed from the bar.
Safe to say there was plenty of sore heads evident whilst cleaning up the mess the next day!hide
We recently offered customers the chance to win full hospitality tickets to the Sussex V Durham match at the Sussex County Cricket Ground.
Our four lucky winners met us down at the SCCC for a full day of food, drink and some brilliant cricket – the match ended with Sussex batting their way to an unexpected victory.
Whilst we were there, we had over 150 entries into two different competitions – one to win a signed cricket bat and the other to win a year's supply of free electricity. Howzat!
We were thrilled to have been finalists in the Comms Business awards this year, and now we are bursting with pride that we have taken home the award for Large Reseller of the Year & Overall Reseller of the Year.
The evening was brilliant, with Jimmy Carr being the evening's entertainment & presenter. Chris and Ralph ensured the celebrations lasted to the early hours, since we had plenty to celebrate!hide
Focus Group entered two football teams into the 'Sussex Have a Heart' charity football tournament. There was a total of ten teams, and after a tiring morning, it came down to our Focus A-Team and B-Team in the playoff for 3rd place.
It came down to penalties and our A-Team took the win! The tournament raised a total of £850.00.hide
Before the hype has settled about the Comms Dealer Awards, we have just been notified that we are finalists for the Comms Business Awards and we are absolutely thrilled!
All fingers are crossed, and we are eagerly anticipating the Awards ceremony on 19th June.hide
Last week we attended the Comms Dealer Awards as a finalist in the Reseller Sales Team of the Year category and we are absolutely delighted to announce that we won the award for the second year in a row! After collecting the award there was a hardly a chance for the excitement to settle before we heard our name called for the second time that evening. We won the Comms Dealer Overall Sales Team of the Year – this is an award that you cannot enter, it is based on the winners from all preceding sales and account team awards categories, who the judges consider to be the very best of all sales category winners.
A huge thank you to all of our staff and customers who have helped Focus reach these achievements!hide
After winning Reseller Sales Team of the Year in 2013 at the Comms Dealer awards, we are absolutely delighted to have made the shortlist of finalists for 2014.
We've booked our spaces at the event in May and are looking forward to the lunch wine and entertainment, and of course finding out if we have defended our title!hide
Focus are delighted to now be offering Connection Vouchers as part of the scheme run by the BDUK.
If you are an SME, charity or social enterprise with 250 employees or less with a turnover of £40m or less, or located in one of the selected cities, then you qualify for a Government grant ranging from £250 to £3,000 to assist with the installation of your internet connectivity.
The Connection Vouchers Scheme has been set up to support economic growth and jobs across the UK by providing people with the ability to access higher bandwidth internet connectivity to encourage the market to go further in a shorter space of time than it previously would have done. This investment in the UK's future will enable us to be more competitive in the global market and establish a stronger economy.
The 22 SuperConnected Cities in the programme are Aberdeen, Belfast, Birmingham, Bradford, Brighton and Hove, Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff, Coventry, Derby, Derry/Londonderry, Edinburgh, Leeds, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Newport, Oxford, Perth, Portsmouth, Salford and York.
The scheme is open until March 2015 and vouchers are available on a first come, first served basis.
Contact us on 01273 874150 and take advantage of the scheme and grow your business today.hide
Award winning B2B communications specialist Focus Group, announced today of their involvement in the management buyout of voice & data reseller RPM Communications. RPM, based in Norwich will continue to trade under their current name while adding all of the Focus Group products & services to their portfolio.
Focus co-owner Chris Goodman comments; "it's been in the pipeline for a while, and after last year's successful acquisition of Abtec Communications, we made a decision to support this management buyout and will be working in a partnership with them moving forward.'
We asked Jon Richardson of RPM Solutions for his view, “Many of the systems and services we provide are similar to the Focus portfolio and we have been in discussion with Chris & Ralph for a while. We decided it was the best move for both the business and the clients and now look forward to benefitting from the extended portfolio we now have access to."
This acquisition will allow Sussex based Focus Group to increase their geographic reach and gain further recognition in the education and medical sectors where RPM have a strong presence. RPM were awarded 2013 Communications Provider of the Year for GP's.hide
Focus have taken on 12 new members of staff, to set a great start to 2014.
An entire new Telesales Team are in force and will be working for the newly welcomed Team Leader Emma Blissett. We have also had new additions to both the Focus Mobile and Focus Networks division, as well as two new Internal Account Managers.
All of the new employees are keen, driven and excited to be here - we are looking forward to them all hitting the ground running!
In September we made it into the Tech Track 100 for the fourth time in five years! The award recognises the fastest growing private technology companies in the UK by sales growth over a three year period.
This achievement for Focus Group was recognised at the 13th annual Tech Track awards ceremony, held in London last week and co-owners Chris Goodman & Ralph Gilbert attended to celebrate our success and collect their reward.
Focus Group sponsored Brighton & Hove Albions football match at the Amex on Saturday. The Albion played Blackburn Rovers and finished with a 3-0 victory! This being their first home win since mid-September, we like to think that our sponsorship, gave them a splash of luck!
A full day of hospitality was well underway by the afternoon for Chris, Ralph and 10 other members of Focus at the 1901 Club's Platinum Bupa Lounge, including a 'behind the scenes' dressing room tour, a champagne reception and a three course meal.
With sweepstakes running through the team, there was plenty of celebrating when Barnes scored a penalty in the first half! Caskey scored shortly into the second half with a header in the 56th minute, followed by a close-range goal from Barnes to secure a confident win.
It was decided that since Ashley Barnes had scored his first league goal of the season and also scored his 50th goal for the team, as well as leading Brighton to a win, we were privileged to award him with Man of the Match.
A great day was had by all! "Seagulls!"
Over the weekend 16 brave members of staff spent the evening, which stretched well into the early hours, at the notoriously haunted Old Brighton Cells housed in the eerie basement of Brighton's town hall, and if an abandoned Victorian prison isn't scary enough for you, Brighton's first Chief Inspector Henry Solomon, was murdered here in 1844 by one of the inmates!
The team immersed themselves into the centre of the city's most dramatic ghost story, which granted them an access all areas pass to the darkest recesses of the jail, not normally open to the public.
In order to raise as much money as possible for the cause, the team took with them a fully equipped 'Paranormal Intelligence Gathering Service' (The PIGS) and a 'Medium' in an attempt to catch some spooky evidence! We managed to raise over £2,000 for the local charity, and so far more have more than doubled our original target of £1,000! Thank you to all who donated, there were some definite suspicious goings on in the ghostly lock up.
The Martlets Hospice cares for over one thousand people living in and around Brighton & Hove, every year, it plays a vital role in helping people to live life as fully as they can right up until the end, and also provides help and support for the families affected.
Earlier this week it was The Annual End of Season Players Party at the Sussex County Cricket Club.
Members of the Players Club and the players themselves get together every year to celebrate the end of the cricket season in style, and this year our Director Chris Goodman took part in the 'It's a Knockout' style occasion. Blending together a combination of penguins, a bouncy castle, foam (a LOT of foam!) and a 'Milk the Cow' challenge - a great day was had by all. The festivities went on well into the evening at the 'Players Club Awards Dinner' where Chris's competitive streak made a final appearance for the day - karaoke, so with true Focus flair he gave a great rendition of Mack the Knife and came in at number one!
Earlier this month the Focus Team took on another fundraising challenge – The Gamma Ball Rally. The principle of the rally was to drive a cheap (but in our case classy!) car across Europe from Newbury to Budapest, visiting some infamous racing circuits on the way.
After a few practice runs around Brands Hatch, Directors Chris and Ralph, Russell from Telecoms and Daryl from Gamma set off in “Valerie the Vectra” (a pimped out 2.5 litre Vauxhall Vectra GSI) and after two days of driving dressed as Abba, the drama of a 180 spin on a very wet Nurburgring (which they swiftly recovered from), and plenty of wining and dining, they finally made it to Budapest in one piece, finishing in 2nd place.
A fantastic £43,000 was donated to charities East Cheshire Hospice and Action Through Enterprise.
A courageous crew of 4 took part in the inaugural Great Sussex Bath Race on Sunday. Chris Goodman, Ralph Gilbert, Seb Birch & Vicki Rishbeth made up the Focus team, and competed against 13 other crews including Virgin, BA, Natwest, Bentley & John Lewis. Teams were required to build their own rafts from a bath, wooden poles, barrels and rope. After numerous hotly contested heats, Focus Group qualified for the Grand Final in which 6 teams went head-to-head for the coveted prize. In a very tactical race, cheered on by raucous onlookers, the Focus crew came home in a very respectable 2nd place. The team are already discussing raft improvements for next year's event. The event has raised over £13,000 for Chestnut Tree House and LifeCentre. Check out this link for the coverage on ITV news.
On 28th June, 11 of our staff will be undertaking the Three Peaks Challenge in an effort to raise money for their chosen charities. The challenge is to climb, and travel between, the tallest mountains in England, Scotland and Wales, within 24 hours. They have been training hard and no doubt their determination will make this adventure a successful and fulfilling experience for everyone involved. See our dedicated website for more info, blogs and an opportunity to donate -
Focus recently attended the Comms Dealer Sales Awards ceremony at the Park Lane Hotel in London and were named Reseller Sales Team of the Year (£7.5M plus turnover). These awards recognise the hard work and successes of the sales and marketing teams on the front line of generating business in the UK. Focus beat a record number of entrants this year, cementing our position as one of fastest growing businesses in the industry. BBC sports presenter, Hazel Irvine, presented the award to our Directors and members of the team.
L-R Hazel Irvine, Chris Goodman, Ralph Gilbert, Jack Loraine and Richard Scotthide
Derived from a FTSE 50 company, Focus Integration Solutions was founded to deliver technical excellence and an unrivalled level of service and support to their clients. Focus I.S. is a specialist mobility and data centre solutions provider that helps clients plan, design, build, manage and maintain their IT infrastructures. With a pin-sharp focus on their chosen partners and vendors, they are truly specialised and highly accredited.
Focus has acquired local competitor Abtec Communications. This strategic move sees Focus expand its engineering resources in the South East and take on Ericsson LG as a new manufacturer. The move will allow our customers to benefit from a dedicated engineering & maintenance department who specialise in LG & Hosted Telephony.hide
For the 3rd year running, Focus Group has been ranked in the Deloitte 2012 Technology Fast 500 EMEA and is recognised as one of the 500 fastest-growing technology companies in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). Being included in the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA is recognized as a significant achievement. Combining technological innovation, entrepreneurship and rapid growth, Fast 500 companies span a variety of industry sectors, and are leaders in hardware, software, telecom, semiconductors, internet, media, life sciences and emerging areas, such as clean technology.hide
Focus staff had great fun raising money for the Breast Cancer Campaign on Wear It Pink Day. We had a competition for the 'pinkest' outfit, people brought in pink cakes (which always goes down well) plus other fundraising games throughout the day.
Focus has been ranked in The Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track 100 league table for the 3rd time in 4 years. The Tech Track 100 ranks the fastest growing private technology companies in Britain by sales growth over a three-year period. Focus has grown from a turnover of £4.2 million in 2008 to a turnover of £12.4 million in 2011, achieving an average of 43% annual sales growth in the last 3 years.
Focus is one of 20 companies in the South East to win a place on the league table, who together have made a strong contribution to the local economy over the last three years, despite the tough economic conditions. Together they employ nearly 1,400 people and have achieved combined sales of £270m.
Focus co-owners, Chris Goodman and Ralph Gilbert, attended the 12th Annual Tech Track Awards dinner in London to celebrate our success with the other league table winners.
Darren Gander and Andrew Botting are now 'Gold Standard' Accredited with Blackberry.
Following a number of online training modules and a full day of classroom training with RIM instructors, Darren and Andrew are now trained to sell Blackberry at the highest standard. This means they have a full understanding of RIM's entire product portfolio how they interact with Blackberry Enterprise and Express.
Following our fantastic Focus Golf Day earlier this summer, we recently presented Sarah Arnold of Chestnut Tree House Hospice with the money generously raised by all our guests. A cheque for £2,265.50 was presented by Chris Goodman and Ralph Gilbert, who demonstrated their continued support for this worthy local charity.
From left to right: Ralph Gilbert, Sarah Arnold, Chris Goodman.hide
Focus has continued to support the Vodafone Partner Programme, helping to make it their most successful year yet and as a result, we have been promoted to Gold Partner. Focus share Vodafone's enthusiasm and excitement for unified communications, to deliver better ways of working to businesses across the UK.hide
Focus has been short listed as a finalist in the Federation of Communication Services Awards 2012, under the category 'Reseller of the Year'. This award recognises innovation and excellence in the telecoms sector. FCS, the UK trade association for the communications industry, are holding their ceremony in London on 21st June and hopefully Focus will be successful again (we also won in 2010)
Focus Group have been officially announced as a Samsung Platinum Partner. Samsung say that their Platinum Business Partners have reached the top level of recognition for reseller partners and have the highest number of certified associates and experts. Focus are in the top 10% of Samsung resellers with the highest levels of business and have an established track record with Samsung.
Richard Howard of Samsung visited the Focus offices recently to present Focus staff with their official certificate.
Left to right: Ralph Gilbert, Kelly Maynard (Micro P), Angus Mackay, Richard Howard (Samsung), Ryan Emeryhide
Focus Group recently took some new company photos, which have highlighted the impressive growth the company has achieved in the last few years, especially in terms of staff numbers. They have gone from 10 staff in 2007 to over 70 (and rising!) in 2012.
Focus are currently on another recruitment drive – particularly in Field Sales and Telesales – so please see the jobs board on the homepage for the excellent opportunities at Focus.
Focus in 2007
Focus in 2012hide
Building on our commitment to providing Sussex County Cricket Club with a resilient and cost effective telecoms solution, Focus Group are now SCCC's official Energy and Telecoms Partner.
Trevor Mould, Sussex's Marketing and Communications Manager said, “Focus Group have proved themselves to be a key partner to Sussex CCC over the past three years, providing, maintaining and improving all of our communications infrastructure.”
'Chris Goodman with the SCCC squad at the 2012 pre-season Press & Media Day'hide
A group of cricket enthusiasts from Focus went to the Sussex Cricket Club Indoor School for the finals of the business Street20 Cricket on 26th March. Street20 is a fast moving game, designed to be played anywhere from indoor urban environments to outdoor spaces, such as village greens. Street20 games are short and fast moving, with small teams trying to score as many runs as possible.
Focus was excited to be joined by Sarah Taylor, the England and Sussex cricketer, who commented, "Joining Focus for the Street20 cricket was a thoroughly enjoyable day - I had so much fun. I wouldn't think twice about playing with them again."
From left, MD Ralph Gilbert, Beki Taylor, Sarah Taylor, Lee Aylward, Seb Birch, Antony Sullivanhide
Focus Group has become a member of the Concert Group, allowing us to expand our geographic reach and utilise the other group members to service and support our customers. This move further cements our commitment to delivering the highest possible levels of service to our customers. For information on the Concert Group visit www.concertgroup.co.uk.
A few of our more intrepid staff did some white water rafting at the Olympic course - no medals this time though!
During November each year, MOVEMBER is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men's faces in the UK and around the world, the aim of which is to raise vital funds and awareness for men's health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men. Our Focus guys were keen to join in and as you can see below, they sported quite a range of 'tashes - the ever-popular horseshoe being a surprising hit!
The Focus Group has once again been listed in the Deloitte EMEA 500.
The EMEA 500 list includes the 500 fastest growing technology based businesses across Europa, the Middle East and Africa.
The programme was launched over a decade ago to celebrate the world-class achievements of the EMEA technology sector and are all about revenue growth driven by leading intellectual property, and are a celebration of innovation and entrepreneurship.
Managing Director, Ralph Gilbert said, 'After successes in the Tech Track and the Fast 50 last year, it is a great pat on the back for all of our staff to be listed among some of the most dynamic businesses in our industry.'hide
September see the launch of Focus Select, the latest edition to the Focus Group Of Companies. Focus Select matches exceptional candidates in permanent and contract positions with the employers they deserve and covers all aspects of IT and Technology recruitment. Ross White, Director and Co-Founder commented, 'Joining the Focus Group of Companies was an obvious choice for us. We place IT professionals in technical roles and the Focus Group portfolio means that they are constantly dealing with IT Managers & Developers. We have found that existing clients are keen to work with other divisions within the group and this bodes well for further diversification in the future.'hide
As part of our commitment to supporting Chestnut Tree House Children's Hospice and the Gambia Support Group, a small team of Focus staff did a sponsored swim between the Brighton Pier and the West Pier, having a great time and raising much needed funds in the process.
Focus Group Partners with Sussex Enterprise.
The Focus Group are pleased to announce that we have been named as the preferred telecoms supplier to Sussex Enterprise. The partnership will provide members with a full range of cost effective telecom ranging from start-up businesses through to premier members. This represents a fantastic opportunity for both businesses and the SME's in Sussex.
As part of the growth plans for the Focus Group, July sees 10 new faces join our team. Marc Langley joins Focus Energy to provide Gas & Electricity procurement to our existing clients. Andy Parker joins Focus as the head of Customer Relations. Stacey Boyd, Lee Aylward, Ashley Haulkham and Matt Sheppard join Focus Telecom in sales roles. Dean Price joins as Management Accountant for the Focus Group. Lance Stewart and Tim Sinclair join Focus IT Services to bolster the technical team and Richard Martin joins in software development. We hope that these new additions will be instrumental in helping the Focus Group achieve its target of a £20 million turnover by the end of Q2 2013.hide
Abbie, Beki, Michelle and Natalie all took part in 'Race 4 Life' on Sunday 5th June. A big congratulations to all that took part in this worthwhile event.
As part of our ongoing commercial strategy, we are using our office relocation as an opportunity to re-brand.
Don't worry, there is no change of personnel or management but you will notice a slight change to the name and the logos.
Focus will be made up of six core divisions, listed to the right.
All of these divisions will be based from our new offices and are managed in-house rather than being outsourced. This structure allows us to provide our customers with a complete end-to-end solution across a wide spectrum product portfolio.
The company will now be referred to as Focus, rather than Focus, and the divisions are collectively known as the Focus Group.
Over the past 6 months we've worked tirelessly to develop a future-proof strategy by further broadening our product portfolio. As part of our re-brand we are introducing 4 new divisions; Focus Network Services, Focus IT Services, Focus Energy and Focus Digital Media Click on the icons below to find out more:hide
Focus is moving to new offices on the 21st April. After purchasing Europa House in Southwick, West Sussex in December 2010, we have completed a major refurbishment to the 9000 sq ft of office space, to include a demonstrations suite and a state of the art training facility.
After almost 7 years at Hove Technology Centre, we took the decision to invest in our own commercial premises. Once settled in we will begin recruiting once again, as we continue to develop our product portfolio and the level of service that we offer to our customers. Our New Address is:
Europa House, Southwick Square, Southwick, West Sussex, BN42 4FJhide
Focus are proud sponsors of the football team B&M United who have two teams in the Brighton Sunday League which have now been kitted out with 4 new kits for the forthcoming season!
CLICK TO ENLARGEhide
Focus have been ranked 16th in the Deliotte Fast 50 after achieving 1700% growth over 5 years.
The Deloitte Fast 50 is a ranking of the country's 50 fastest-growing technology companies based on percentage revenue growth over five years.
Ranked 16 th nationally, Focus were ranked 4 th in the South East beating companies such as Lovefilm UK Ltd and O-bit Telecom Ltd.
The programme was launched over a decade ago to celebrate the world-class achievements of the UK technology sector. The Technology Fast 50 awards are all about revenue growth driven by leading intellectual property, and are a celebration of innovation and entrepreneurship.
Focus have also emerged as a winner in the Technology Fast 500 EMEA 2010 rankings, which recognises the 500 fastest-growing technology companies across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
Director, Chris Goodman said, 'It has been a fantastic year for Focus. The staff have had their efforts recognised and we are achieving brilliant things. It was only in September that we ranked in The Sunday Times Tech Track 100 for the 2 nd consecutive year so to be ranked in the Deloitte Fast 50 and the EMEA Fast 500 as well is mind blowing. We have put a lot of hard work into Focus to bring good customer service and the lowest prices we can to our customers, and that hard work is all coming to fruition.'
The award ceremony will be held at Arsenal Football Club's Emirates Stadium in London on Thursday 25 th November.
The wanderer returns. Darren Ford, the Community and Education Manager at Lewes FC, has returned from his 328 mile journey starting off in London and finishing in Paris...all on his bicycle!
Focus were proud to sponsor Darren £1,200 and purchase some essential equipment for his trip.
Darren cycled to raise money for Action Medical Research, a charity that relies entirely on donations to fund a range of research projects that address serious childhood conditions and improve quality of life for children with disabilities. To date Darren has broken his target of £1,200 by raising over £1,800 online but is keen to continue fundraising.
We are glad he is back safe and sound and would like to wish him luck with his fundraising in the future for this brilliant cause.
Focus is one of only 17 companies in the South East to be listed in this year's Sunday Times Microsoft Tech Track 100. Published in the Sunday Times, it ranks the 100 fastest growing private technology companies in Britain by the average sales growth over a three-year period.
This is the 2 nd consecutive year that Focus has made the top 100. They were ranked 4 th out of the Telecom Service Providers and were placed 75th overall.
Director Chris Goodman states : "To be listed in consecutive years is a fantastic achievement, particularly in the midst of a global recession. 2010 has proved to be an excellent year for the business and we've had some big wins. I'd like to thank all of our staff for their hard work and continued commitment. "
The Tech Track 100 awards dinner will be held at Vinopolis in London on Tuesday 16 November 2010.
Focus4u are the proud winners of the FCS 'Reseller of the Year Award'. This is a new award for 2010 and is awarded for the recognition of innovation and excellence in the telecoms sector. The awarding body, the Federation of Communication Services, is the UK trade association for the communication industry and ensures standards within the industry are constantly improving for the benefit of both service providers and customers. Focus beat off stiff competition from other resellers all over the UK but the company's dedication to success won the judges over and went on to become the first recognized "Reseller of the Year".
Focus continues to grow at a rapid pace but is keeping its feet firmly on the ground, keeping in mind the intrinsic qualities that the company was founded on. Long may our success continue!
Vicki Rishbeth joined Focus in May 2005 as their first member of staff. Working as Office Manager, Ms Rishbeth's commitment to excellence has led her to become hugely knowledgeable about all aspects of the telecoms industry. It was that commitment to the development of her team, her dedication to the task in hand and her desire to see Focus succeed that has seen her become an integral part of the business.
Vicki's new role as Operations Director begins on the 1st June and the whole team at Focus wish her every success.hide
Focus has fought off stiff competition to represent the Telecoms sector in the Business Improvement District (BID) at Lancing Business Park. BIDs are organised to encourage competitive purchasing in a geographic area and are becoming more and more popular across the country.hide
At the beginning of 2010 Focus Ltd were awarded a Platinum Accreditation from Gamma Telecom, one of the largest network carriers of voice minutes in the UK.
The accreditation was awarded after staff at Focus excelled in successfully completing a series of exams including Communicator, FeaturePlus and IP DirectConnect products focusing on sales, technical and support skills.
Congratulations to those who achieved so highly.
After such a successful year in 2009, Focus have recruited two additional support staff in Lauren Tedford & Sophie Jones. Operations manager Vicki Rishbeth commented, "A key element of our continued success is the service levels that we are able to provide to our customers. Ongoing training ensures that customers get the very best levels of care and the addition of two more support staff shows our continued committment in this area.hide
However the Focus office will be throwing themselves into these challenges to raise money for charity. Money raised will be split between our Gambia Support Group and our chosen local charity Chestnut Tree House.
Starting off with the Brighton Marathon, Directors Paul Tolhurst and Ralph Gilbert set the standard by running the 26 miles in just over 4 hours completing the first phase of this incredible challenge.
In the summer, more of the team will be stepping out and stripping down to swim between Brighton's two famous and historic landmarks, The West Pier and The Palace Pier.
The team will end the year with an exhausting trek over the 3 peaks. A grueling 4,408ft walk up Ben Nevis in Scotland, followed by 3,210ft up Scafell Pike in the Lake District and finishing with a 3,560ft hike up Snowdon in Wales.
Please keep checking the website on details of how to donate to our chosen charity.
Focus are pleased to announce that our mobile department ‘Focus Mobile’ are FINALISTS in the category of Business to Business Dealer of the Year 2010.
The winners will be announced at the star studded ceremony on Thursday 18th March. The award ceremony is being hosted by comedian Michael Mcintyre at the London Hilton, Park Lane.
Irrespective of the result this is a huge achievement for a team that was only set up in 2007. When asked about the awards, head of department Keane Beaken said, “To be listed as finalists in a national award like this is fantastic. It is testament to the hard work and dedication of our team and gives us real encouragement for the rest of the year”.
With fixed line customer numbers soaring, Richard Scott will be supporting the sales team as an Internal Account Manager. Also joining the sales team in January will be Warren Lincoln and James Baker as Field Salespeople.
The continued success of the mobile department sees Andrew Botting join the sales team and Amy Lawless, previously of Autocall, taking up a position in Mobile Operations.
The growth in staff numbers comes after yet another successful year for Focus, this year receiving national recognition being listed in the Sunday Times Microsoft Tech Track 100.hide
On Monday 23 rd November 2009, 13 extremely brave male members of staff waxed various body parts for local charity Chestnut Tree House.
The evening started with a few drinks to relax the men for the torture they were about to receive and the girls took the front row seats for what promised to be a very amusing evening.
The screams and cries could be heard reverberating around the industrial estate and all 13 men left the office feeling silky smooth.
The current sponsorship total is in excess of £1100 and more money keeps coming in.
The rest of the Focus team would like to congratulate the brave individuals for proceeding with the wax and for raising such a large amount of money for such a deserving cause.
Congratulations guys, Brilliant event.
Focus has celebrated its fifth year in business with a birthday party at Hotel Du Vin in Brighton. Nearly 100 guests attended the event including staff, resellers and customers.
The Sussex based telecoms company recently achieved national acclaim when it was listed in the Sunday Times Microsoft Tech Track as one of the 100 fastest growing technology companies in the UK. The owners were quick to thank the staff and resellers for their continued support. Chris Goodman, Sales Director and co-founder commented, 'We have a great product portfolio and excellent commercials, but without our staff and resellers we would certainly not have achieved the levels of success we've experienced to date'.
Focus now employs 22 staff and has an annual turnover of almost £7m. Looking forward Mr Goodman said, 'We provide telecoms solutions to over 3000 businesses in the South East, and we are passionate about our products. We are really looking forward to the next five years and all the challenges that lie ahead'.
'Focus Directors with Ambrose Harcourt'hide
Focus is one of only 19 companies in the South East to be listed in this years Sunday Times Microsoft Tech Track 100. Published in the Sunday Times, it ranks the 100 fastest growing private technology companies in Britain by sales growth over a three-year period. Focus ranks as the 6th fastest growing telecoms company in the UK and was placed 59th overall.
The Sunday Times runs a number of league tables under the Fast Track banner including Top Track 100 and Profit Track 100. Sir Richard Branson has endorsed the league tables saying, "Fast Track has become a definitive barometer of growth companies"
This years awards ceremony is being held at the Vinopolis in London on the 17th November.
Focus have undertaken to strengthen their relationship with Sussex County Cricket Club. After 3 years as a corporate sponsor we have increased our financial commitment to the club, putting pen to paper in a 3 year agreement that sees Focus as the Official Telecoms Partner for the club.
In addition we will continue to support the Sussex Young Cricketers Educational Trust (SYCET) whose mission is to provide the best possible facilities and opportunities for young people to participate in the game of cricket , irrespective of background or ability.
Sussex Cricket seems to reach new heights every season at the moment. Since we become involved commercially they have been the most successful club in the country winning the Friends Provident Trophy in 2006, County Championship in 2006 & 2007, Pro40 League in 2008, and most recently the Twenty20 Cup in 2009. We now look forward to seeing the Sussex Sharks take part in the Champions League Twenty20 to be held in India later this year.
With a history of supporting charitable causes in Africa, Focus have chosen to concentrate part of our charitable efforts closer to home. Chestnut Tree House is the only children's hospice in Sussex and relies almost entirely on donations and fundraising.
We were introduced to the charity by Patron, Ambrose Harcourt. Having discussed how we can best make a difference our staff have committed to taking part in a number of fundraising activities over the next few years. The first of these is a sponsored waxing, where 12 male staff members will have various 'bits' waxed. Further details of this event will be posted on our Charity page.
Many of our staff will also be given an extra day off to volunteer at the hospice, a contribution that greatly improves the quality of life for patients and their carers.
Focus are pleased to announce that we are FINALISTS in the category of 'Best Customer Service' in the Brighton & Hove Business Awards 2009.
A list of the finalists will be published in the Argus on Tuesday next week and the awards ceremony is on the 9th October where the winners will be announced.
In order to achieve the 'Approved Partner' status, Focus had to consistently achieve high levels of quality O2 connections and demonstrate the ability to offer businesses an excellent level of service and ongoing support.
It's been non stop in recent months as we have implemented new technology that enables us to integrate with Wholesale Line Rental 3. While the move to WLR3 comes at considerable expense, it is yet another demonstration of Focus's continued committment to providing the highest possible level of service to it's clients.
OFCOM, the UK telephony regulator, made a stipulation that BT must make its wholesale services more accessible in order to create a level playing field. As a result, Openreach was set up in 2005. WLR3 represents the latest level of deregulation and ensures that Focus has equivalence with BT Retail. WLR3 gives Focus a faster, more accurate ordering process; more efficient appointment scheduling, better customer information and vastly improved fault management procedures.
"As a provider of Wholesale Line Rental it is imperative for us to be totally up to date with all Openreach developments. For this reason we are utlising the new WLR3 product, which ensures total equivalence with all Communications Providers.
WLR3 allows us access into the internal processes within Openreach, whether it be in the faults or provisioning spheres. This enables us to give far more information to our end user, manage expectations and complete tasks in far shorter time frames than previously we were capable of.
We have had an active role in the development of WLR3 and many of our points raised have been taken on and included in the product. We will also continue to do this moving forward. Our familiarity with the product and with the processes within Openreach give us the edge against our competitors and ensure that our service is second to none." - Vicki Rishbeth - Focus Operations Manager
Focus are now proud gold sponsors of Brighton Racecourse, we look forward to a prosperous relationship with the racecourse throughout the year.hide
Focus's mobile division has won the Yes Telecom Q-Factor Award for the first quarter of 2009. The Q-Factor award, literally standing for 'Quality Factor', measures the key criteria upon which Yes Telecom's business is based; Quality connections, low churn and high ARPU and profit levels, not to mention volume of connections. This is a huge achievement for the mobile department that has only been running since January 2007.
On Saturday 13th December, several members of the Focus team took part in a 5 kilometer run for charity. Dressed in santa suits they braved the rain and gale force winds on Brighton seafront to help raise money for 'Crisis', a charity that helps re-house homeless people. Despite crossing the finish line drenched through, everyone completed the course in a good time and had an enjoyable dayhide
We are delighted to have won 'Best Small Business' at the Sussex Business Awards.
This recognises companies with less than 25 employees and focuses on a wide range of business areas including product development, staff training and sustained growth.
The winners of each category were announced during an Oscars-style dinner at the Copthorne Effingham Park Hotel. We would like to thank each and every one of our staff who have helped to create such a thriving business.hide
Staff celebrated Focus' 4 th Birthday with a day of Go-Karting at Q-Leisure in Albourne , Sussex . The competition was rife with 25 people battling it out in a Grand Prix with heats, semi-finals and a grueling final.
The excitement was followed by a celebratory meal in Brighton where it was announced to staff that we had realized our target of reaching £5 million turnover before the end of our 4 th year of trading.
A big thank you to Daryl and Julia from Gamma, who joined us to celebrate our achievements.
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Focus have now become proud commercial partners of Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club for 2008.
In conjunction with Inferno Designs, e-Focus will offer new and existing clients a host of new services. These are focused around four areas; Web, Design, Brand and Print.
Focus have launched a new mobile product to compete in the Pay-as-you-Go arena. Focus Fusion allows customers to have their mobile phone calls billed alongside their landline calls. Many businesses use Pay-as-you-Go but suffer from excessive call charges and having to top-up their mobiles with vouchers. Focus Fusion is typically 50% cheaper than other PAYG options and there is no need to worry about running out of credit, you just pay for what you use.hide
Just under a year ago Focus teamed up with Virgin Unite as a fundraising partner. Part of the Virgin Group it is unique as all the overheads are picked up by Richard Branson and the Virgin Group. 100% of money raised get to the frontline. The charity raises money for numerous initiatives both in the UK and abroad.
We have undertaken to complete 5 fundraising events over the next few years. The first of which was a skydive in November 2007, where we raised over £3000 for the Heaven's Angels foundation which provides medical transport for health-workers throughout SubSaharan Africa.
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7 of our staff took part in the skydive - we were also joined by some staff from one of our associate companies.hide
With the move towards IP gathering momentum, Focus have teamed up with EOS Communications to further develop the options available to our new and existing customers. EOS bring with them years of industry experience and a level of technical expertise that will ensure that our customers get the most reliable IP experience. Offering fully hosted solutions with Quality of Service (QOS) guarantees, Focus look forward to the implementation of BT's 21st Century Network and all the new and exciting opportunities that the IP world will eventually bring.
Driven by a desire to make a difference, Focus have become a fundraising partner of Virgin Unite. Funded by Richard Branson and Virgin, the monies raised go directly to the cause and are not swallowed up with running costs - you can be sure that every penny goes straight to the 'front line'. Focus will be arranging various events to raise money for various campaigns. Our first event is a Sky Dive to be held on the 25th November - 10 people will be doing a tendem jump from 12,000 feet with an aim of raising £5000.
Since it's launch in January, Focus mobile has exceeded all expectations. With over 1000 mobiles connected in just 6 months we have been forced to expand the offices to cater for this booming area of business. Focus mobile is fast making an impact within the Focus group and we hope that it's success continues.hide
As we approached the end of yet another fantastic financial year, we took the opportunity to reward those who had excelled and enjoyed a day away from the office. This also gave us the chance to surprise 4 of our staff with new company cars as a thanks for their hard work over the past 3 years.
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Due to the results of our customer survey earlier this year we are pleased to announce the launch of Focus Mobile. The new division of the company will be dedicated to providing honest impartial advice to both new and existing customers. It will cover everything from basic handsets to blackberry devices and will offer all major networks.hide
We dined at Santa Fe, wined at Po Na Na and then lost the years profits at the Casino. By 4am we had all enjoyed a thoroughly good time and drunk the contents of a small brewery. See some embarrassing photos below.
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As a long standing supporter of Sussex cricket, Director Chris Goodman is delighted to announce that for the '07 and '08 seasons Focus will be involved in sponsorship at the club. Throughout the coming year we will be offering our customers the opportunity to win complimentary tickets and will also be having a hospitality day during the Summer - watch out here for more details.hide
Focus and Linkline Limos (Recently purchased by Focus) teamed up to assist with the 1st Birthday Celebrations of the 'Children's Walk of Fame' at Drusillas Park , Alfriston, East Sussex . Competition winners were picked up in Brighton by Linkline and chauffered to the event in style where they received VIP treatment. Childrens Entertainers including BBC's Dic & Dom, SpongeBob SquarePants and Gemma Hunt (CBBC Presenter) were inducted after a nationwide vote. The Awards ceremony was hosted by Dave Benson Phillips (Children's TV Presenter 'Get Your Own Back') who was inducted last year along with the 'Cheeky Girls', Pudsy Bear and TV presenter Chris Packham.
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Our customers will be pleased to know that we have added another two recruits to the team. They will help to ensure that we maintain our excellent levels of customer care. While growth in customer numbers continues to soar we are conscious that customers want regular account reviews. Russell and Neil have now received thorough training and will shortly be let loose to make sure that customers are getting the most from the services we offer. (Another two men for Vicky to boss around!!).hide
Continuing our tradition of sponsoring local sports teams, Focus helped in sending Chailey Colts Under 14 football team to Gambia . The Georgetown network of schools and Banjul Juniors FC hosted 4 football matches. Wearing replica England strips supplied by Focus the Chailey Colts came away victorous only losing one game. The matches were hard fought on pitches made of sand in temperatures exceeding 35C. The photos below show the traditional Gambian welcome dance, the team 'goalhanging' and a sunrise over the river Gambia.
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In a continued effort to develop our business, we have teamed up with Brightel Datanet, a Siemens specialist based in Brighton . Using our already successful 'Partner Programme', they will be able to offer their new and existing customers a range of services all under their own banner and on one monthly bill. Not only will Focus benefit from their added business, but we will also gain their knowledge and expertise in IP Solutions - an area where few dare to tread.
In our continued pursuit of excellent customer service, we have become members of OTELO. The Office of Telecommunications Ombudsman is an OFCOM approved body which is designed to protect the interests of the consumer. As a member of OTELO our customers have the opportunity to follow a complaints procedure that ultimately ensures a fair and independent view.
The new Focus website was launched on the 1st of September 2005. The new site contains many new features and facilities. We have dedicated support, a live news and update banner providing you with up to the minute reports.hide
Happy Birthday to Focus Ltd. We celebrate with colleagues and dealers in Keiters Bar in Hove. An enjoyable evening was had by all. Can’t wait till the Christmas party!!hide
Due to continued growth we moved into our new office in Unit H, Hove Technology Centre. Any excuse to buy some new furniture.hide
Focus sponsors of Elephant & Castle football team
Come on the Elly!! As club sponsors of the Elephant & Castle football team, Focus are proud to watch them raise the Sussex Cup in a thrilling Final at Lancing, the final score 4-2. This to be added to the league and two cups already won in the season.
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Focus Scoops Comms Dealer Overall Sales Team of the Year Award
After picking up the Reseller of the Year Award, we were over the moon when we were announced the winners of the Overall Sales Team of the Year, this award is granted to one of the winneing teams of the evening in all preceding sales and account team awards categories, who the judges consider the very best of all the sales category winners!
Focus wins Comms Dealer Reseller of the Year for the second time.
We are absolutely delighted to announce that Focus have been awarded Reseller of the Year for the second year running at the Comms Dealer Awards!
Focus have continued to work on customer service, growth and providing the products that meet our customer needs. Thank you to everyone who helped us to retain our title.
Focus ranks again in Sunday Times Tech Track 100
We are very proud to announce that Focus have been ranked in the 2013 Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track 100! This league table recognises the top 100 fastest growing technology businesses in the UK.
With £17.3 million worth of sales in 2012, and making it into the league for the fourth time in five years, The Focus Group Directors Chris and Ralph are very pleased about it!
Focus become microsoft authorised education reseller
Focus is now part of the Microsoft Authorised Education Reseller Programme, as an Authorised Education Reseller. This programme allow us to offer innovative products to help those in education achieve anytime anywhere learning.
Focus win comms dealer sales team of the year
Focus has won the Comms Dealer Sales Award - Reseller Sales Team of the Year, recognising the hard work of our sales team. During 2012, our turnover grew from £12.4m to £17.3m and an internal leads programme saw over 5000 sales leads between our divisions.
Focus rank in the Deloitte Technology Fast 500
For the 3rd year running, Focus Group has made the Deloitte 2012 Technology Fast 500 EMEA and is recognised as one of the 500 fastest-growing technology companies in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
"Focus Group and the other 2012 Technology Fast 500 winners forged ahead in a challenging economic environment to realise exceptional growth," said David Halstead, Deloitte United Kingdom and partner in charge of the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA programme." We commend Focus for this impressive accomplishment."
Increasingly we find ourselves in the headlines. Please find below press releases and articles featuring Focus's activities and developments within the industry.
|09.07.13||Bath time for Focus Team||The Argus|
|01.06.13||Award winning Focus Zooms in on growth||Comms Dealer|
|21.03.13||Focus doubles mobile sales team||Mobile News|
|30.11.12||EMEA 2012 Winners||Deloitte|
|16.09.12||Tech Track 100||Tech Track|
|02.07.12||Focus gets 'deserved' Vodafone promotion||Mobile News|
|24.04.12||Sussex County Cricket Club and the Focus Group||SCCC|
|7.11.11||A man with his mind Focused on growth Comms Dealer||Comms Business|
|18.10.11||Rebranding and Ambitions Comms Business||Comms Business|
|20.09.10||Focus ranks again in Sunday Times Tech Track 100||Tech Track|
|01.05.10||Focus Rocks Comms Business||Comms Business|
|02.12.09||Focus complain to Ofcom Comms Business||Comms Business|
|01.12.09||SixtySecond Interview with Chris Goodman||Comms Business|
|19.11.09||Focus in Charity Wax||BHCC|
|12.11.09||Focus Celebrates 5 Years in Business||BHCC|
|01.10.09||Focus under the spotlight||Mobile News|
|23.09.09||Focus Ltd ranks in the Sunday Times Microsoft Tech Track 100||Comms Business|
|20.09.10||Focus ranks again in Sunday Times Tech Track 100||Tech Track|
|14.07.09||Communication is key The Argus||The Argus|
|01.05.09||Beside the Seaside Comms Business||The Argus|
|06.04.09||Focus Negotiates 500 Connections From Orange||Mobile News|
|23.02.09||The MVNO Opportunity||Mobile News|
|13.02.09||How Focus unified TGWU||Comms Dealer|
|01.12.08||Focus win Best Small Business Award 2008/09||Comms Dealer|
|24.11.08||Focus collects Best Small Business Award||Comms Dealer|
|07.10.08||Star line-up for glittering award||The Argus|
|01.11.07||Team of 10 take to the skies||Seaford Gazette|