The investment from Virgin and Esmée will help Auticon employ more autistic adults and accelerate its growth in the UK market.
Originally founded in Germany in 2011, Auticon only launched its UK office in spring, and is already working with UK companies on IT projects with its newly recruited consultants.
The investment by Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Group also offers Auticon a chance to promote social change in attitudes towards autism and employment.
Auticon was founded on the knowledge that autistic adults often have extraordinary cognitive abilities, yet many find it difficult to secure or maintain mainstream employment.
Auticon’s Group CEO, Kurt Schöffer, said: “We are honoured to have such a respected shareholder on board.
“We’re excited to have Richard as one of our new investors and we look forward to continuing expanding our UK business with the support of the Virgin Group.
“In Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, an experienced grant funder and social investor, I am delighted to have gained an investor who brings an overview of inclusive employment in the UK.
“We have been receiving hundreds of applications from adults on the autism spectrum across the UK, France and Germany to work with us at Auticon, and hope this new investment will enable us to see many more.”
Sir Richard Branson added: “Purpose is at the core of what we do at Virgin. It’s clear by the great work Auticon do they have similar values.
“Employment rates amongst autistic adults are a hugely challenging social issue in the UK and globally.
“Helping companies and employees overcome these hurdles is crucial if we’re to enable autistic persons to use their unique skills successfully in the job market.”
In Germany, Auticon already employs over 70 professional IT consultants, including junior consultants and some of the country’s most talented developers.
The company will now be hoping to replicate this success as it moves into the UK.
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