TTi Global, a technical training and staffing company based in Rochester Hills, has acquired Lorien Customer Focus, a global market research and customer satisfaction firm based in Langley, England, outside London. 

The announcement was made jointly by TTi Global President and CEO Lori Blaker and Lorien Customer Focus CEO Archie Sinclair.  

TTi Global, with 1,350 employees in 12 countries, provides work force recruitment and technical training, operations outsourcing and specialized training programs to numerous automotive customers including Chrysler, GM, Ford, Jaguar Land Rover, Toyota and Nissan, as well as companies in hospitality, retail and consumer goods and services including FedEx and Wal-Mart. 

Lorien Customer Focus, with 50 employees in 26 countries, also serves numerous automotive companies helping to boost sales through market research and customer service training programs.  Customers include Jaguar, Ford of Europe, Fiat and Harley-Davidson. 

The combination will create a company capable of recruiting and developing a technically trained workforce that is, at the same time, in direct touch with the needs of its customers. This has tremendous application to automotive dealerships, consumer durable goods manufacturers, industrial products and other sectors that rely on a strong aftermarket service capability. It will also help companies measure and track the impact that training is having on customer satisfaction and retention.

“Helping companies build a technically trained global workforce is critical to local economies,” Blaker said. “By adding the resources of Lorien Customer Focus, we will be able to connect this training to what customers see and experience in each local market. This is a powerful combination that will enable us to demonstrate the connection between a trained workforce and the customer experience.”    

Lorien Customer Focus will continue to operate with the same name, management and staff, and remain in the UK where TTi Global already has an office. Projected annual revenue for the combined companies is $73 million. TTi Global projects revenue of $60 million in 2010.  

“There are tremendous synergies between these two companies,” Sinclair said.  “Combining Lorien Customer Focus expertise and resources with those of TTi Global enables us to put our market intelligence to work in an even greater capacity.  This will benefit companies worldwide that must work harder to meet and exceed customer expectations.”

TTi Global has been family owned since it was founded by Blaker’s parents in 1976. Under Blaker’s leadership, the company has grown worldwide with offices in the U.S., UK, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, India, Japan, Mexico, Thailand, United Arab Emeritus (UAE) and Venezuela. It is one of the top 25 woman-run businesses in the U.S. as recognized by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (2008 and 2009).  Blaker and TTi Global have also been the recipient of numerous local and national business awards.

During the past two years, while many companies were cutting back due to the recession, TTi Global has grown its global workforce by 23 percent and its Michigan workforce by 28 percent. Annual revenue has grown steadily by 20 percent since 2008. The company has also succeeded in diversifying its client base, which started out being comprised of mostly automotive companies and has expanded to include retail, hospitality, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, telecommunications, consumer goods and industrial products.

Lorien Customer Focus has been servicing customers for over 25 years and grew into one of the few mid-sized market research and training firms focusing on the automotive sector. It is considered the first firm to merge together research and training functions enabling companies to measure marketplace perceptions and then develop training programs to address weaknesses in customer service.

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