Growing Capita gains foothold

A number of new economy stocks that swept into the FTSE-100 index in March were pushed out again last month, but Capita has retained its foothold and continues to grow.

Executive chairman Rod Aldridge, a CIPFA accountant, last week revealed Capita had clinched a public private partnership with the Local Government Association to provide consultancy services to all 172 education authorities in England and Wales.

The deal follows the group’s acquisition of IRG, the UK’s third largest share registration services company, for £100m in April, giving the group access to a client base of 1,200 companies quoted on the London Stock Exchange.

A £2.5m investment in in April also gave Capita a 31.5% share in the online service to investors in employee share schemes.

Aldridge commented: ‘The two businesses considerably enhance Capita’s service offering to the private sector and will establish the key platform for further growth in financial and human resource services.’

Earlier in the year, Aldridge clinched a deal in the education sector offering massive earning potential when Capita teamed up with US software giant Microsoft to operate an educational portal for the new Windows 2000 systems bound for 23,000 UK schools.

Aldridge, who The Sunday Times this year ranked as 377th in its rich list with a personal wealth of £80m, started his career at East Sussex council as a treasury trainee before working at CIPFA.

In 1987, Aldridge led a £350,000 management buy-out of the public sector accountancy institute’s computer group, set up when councils were made to put services out to tender. It has grown into a #3.5bn business with an average annual profit growth of 42%.

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