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About us

#ForgingTalent for 140 years

We've been helping people, organisations and economies to grow since 1878, and in 2018 we're celebrating 140 years of #ForgingTalent.

People need skills today that the Victorian era couldn't even dream of, and that's why we keep changing and adapting, preparing people for the future of work.

A leader in global skills development

We work with education providers, employers and governments in over 100 countries across the world to help people, businesses and economies grow by shaping skills systems and supporting skills development.

The Group is made up of City & Guilds, ILM, KineoThe Oxford GroupGen2 and Intertrain. Together, we set the standard for professional and technical education and corporate learning and development around the world.

Each of our brands has its own distinct focus. As a Group, our combined products and services provide a comprehensive range of work-relevant qualifications, assessment, training, and learning support services.

The products and services we offer across the Group are globally recognised and respected.

Our purpose

Everything we do contributes to achieving our purpose: helping people, organisations and economies develop their skills for growth. This purpose drives everything we do.

Our purpose in action

We reinvest our surplus to support our social purpose, which aims to change people's lives through skills.

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Our history

Our history dates back to 1878, when the City of London Corporation and 16 Livery Companies – the trade guilds - established The City and Guilds of London Institute. Their aim was to develop a national system of technical education.

The City and Guilds of London Institute was granted a Royal Charter by Queen Victoria in 1900.

Our recent history

As a Royal Chartered Institute and registered charity, The City and Guilds of London Institute is the awarding body for City & Guilds and ILM qualifications. The City & Guilds Group is the market facing brand for the organisation today.

Expansion into international markets

Over the years, the City & Guilds Group has expanded internationally to address global skills shortages by offering targeted skills education and training services locally.


We have expanded and enhanced the products and services of the Group, through a programme of acquisitions to further support skills development around the world.


ILM joined the Group in 2001, bringing with it 50 years' experience in designing leadership and management courses, to expand our qualifications and assessment services.

Read more about ILM


Kineo was acquired in 2012 to expand our offer to employers by providing complete corporate learning solutions, including elearning.

Since then, we have acquired Kineo's Pacific and South African operations (2013 and 2015) as well as Nine Lanterns (2015) – all of which are now part of Kineo.

Read more about Kineo

The Oxford Group

The Oxford Group joined the Group in 2015 to strengthen the City & Guilds Group's support to multi-national employers by providing leadership development, executive coaching and management training services.

Read more about The Oxford Group


Digitalme joined the City & Guilds Group in 2016 to boost the Group's digital credentialing offer that recognises individuals' competencies and supports employers in finding talent for their businesses.

Read more about Digitalme


Set up in 2001 before being acquired by the Group, e3Learning was part of Open Universities Australia - an online higher education organisation owned by 7 of Australia’s premier universities.

Read more about e3Learning


Established in June 2000 as a joint venture between five partner companies in Cumbria, Gen2 specialises in engineering and nuclear training and is the largest training provider to the UK's civil nuclear industry

Read more about Gen2


Established in 1997, Intertrain is the UK’s largest commercial railway infrastructure training provider, strengthening the City & Guilds Group’s technical training, assessment and certification offer to the engineering, rail and construction industries, following the acquisition of Gen2 in May 2017

Read more about Intertrain

Royal patronage

Our link with the Royal Family started when King Edward VII become the first President of The City and Guilds of London Institute in 1881, whilst he was still the Prince of Wales.

We have enjoyed our Royal patronage ever since. Our current President is Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal.

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Our social purpose aims to make lives better through skills. We do this through bursaries, charitable activities, youth engagement programmes and volunteer work.

More about Our Social Purpose
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The success of the City & Guilds Group starts with our people: from employees to the Group Management Board, the Trustee Board, Council, Fellows and our founders.

More about Our People
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Our brands enable us to deliver our Group purpose: enabling people and organisations to develop their skills for personal and economic growth. 

More about our brands