Press release

Opencast wins 2022 Dynamites growth explosion award

11 November 2022

Independent tech consultancy Opencast has been named as the winner of the ‘growth explosion’ category at the 2022 Dynamites awards.

Regional tech network Dynamo North East confirmed the winners of the annual Dynamites at a prestigious black-tie dinner at Newcastle’s Civic Centre on Thursday night.

The Dynamites are the North East’s most highly anticipated IT and tech awards, showcasing the region’s hotbed of talent and shining a spotlight on its leading businesses. 2022 marks the ninth Dynamites event – and the awards attracted a record 134 entries this year, as well as a record attendance at the civic centre with over 500 people joining on the night.

The growth explosion Dynamites award category, sponsored by LDC, celebrates “growth and success of IT and tech organisations in the North East – job opportunities, building companies, expanding through wider field projects”. Finalists alongside Opencast for 2022 were iamproperty, Mediaworks and Seriös Group.

Colour photo of group celebrating on stage
Opencast won 'growth explosion’ and was highly commended on equalities

It has been another fantastic year for Opencast, with our growth exceeding all expectations – but our growth is not for growth’s sake

Highly commended on equalities

Tyneside-headquartered Opencast was also ‘highly commended’ in the equalities diversity and inclusion category, and head of software development David ‘Sarg’ Sarginson was a finalist for tech champion.

The Dynamites accolade caps a winning November for Opencast - this month the firm was named as the Most Loved Workplace in the North East by Newsweek and as one of the region’s 20 fastest-growing companies by law firm Ward Hadaway. Last month its founder Mike O’Brien was named 2022 entrepreneur of the year by the Entrepreneurs’ Forum.

The past year has seen rapid growth at Opencast, with significant increases in financial performance and people numbers. Turnover leapt by 114% and is expected to rise by another 80% this year. Its staff numbers have also more than doubled – today the business employs close to 400 people.

2022 has also seen Opencast celebrate its 10th anniversary – and open a new office HQ at Hoults Yard in Byker, as well as new office hubs in London, Leeds and Edinburgh.

Welcoming the growth award win, Opencast chief executive Tom Lawson said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been named as the winner of the 2022 Dynamites growth explosion award. It has been another fantastic year for the business, with our growth exceeding all expectations.

“But our business growth is not for growth’s sake,” he added. “It is a direct response to the demand from our from clients and partners to tackle ever-more complex challenges. Much of this work is in government, delivering critical public services to citizens. We expect our growth to accelerate even faster in the year ahead – including growing further into sectors including health, fintech and green energy.

“We’re delighted also to have been highly commended in the Dynamites equalities diversity and inclusion category – and could not be prouder of our brilliant head of software development David ‘Sarg’ Sarginson for being a finalist in the Dynamites tech champion category.

“Our recognition by Newsweek earlier this month as a top 20 UK Most Loved Business demonstrates the reality to our people that our business growth is not at the expense of our people. We are more determined than ever not to lose our people-focused culture.”

Tom added: “I am extremely proud of the incredible Opencast team for this award win. Congratulations to all the other winners and finalists in this year’s Dynamites – and thanks to Dynamo North East for the brilliant work it does promoting regional technology business.”

Read the full list of Dynamites 2022 winners.

Notes to editors

About Opencast

Opencast is a growing team of specialists who work at the heart of government, global finance and growth enterprise with a range of technology and digital consultancy services. Our OpenCulture empowers independent-minded people in our mission to do the right thing for our clients, our team and wider society: good teamwork to make life better.

Opencast specialises in developing end-to-end enterprise solutions for government, health and social care providers and global financial services, as well as for renewable energy and regional enterprises.

We provide services in digital architecture, user-centred design, software, digital & technical delivery, DevOps, cloud & platform engineering, and live services support.

Opencast was founded in 2012 by co-chairs Charlie Hoult and Mike O’Brien. It is headquartered at Byker, Newcastle Upon Tyne, with our people located nationwide, including in London, Leeds, Edinburgh, York and Manchester.

Opencast clients

Public sector
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Department of Health and Social Care
Department for Work and Pensions
Government Digital Service
Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs
Marine Management Organisation
Ministry of Defence
Ministry of Justice


NHS Business Services Authority

Financial services and insurance
Breaking Wave
JP Morgan Chase
Morgan Stanley
Newcastle Building Society
Insure the Box

Renewable energy
Natural Power
Offshore and Renewable Energy Catapult
Wind Energy Benchmarking Services

Voluntary sector
Citizens Advice