Innocent Drinks is to increase its staff numbers by a third in a bid to manage continued rapid growth at home and ambitious expansion plans abroad.

The smoothie supplier wants to grow its 210-strong workforce by 70, with about half of those based at its London headquarters and the other half in sales offices across Europe.

UK-based roles range from customer service personnel ('drinkers' champions') all the way up to a new supply chain director - a position that was created following co-founder Jon Wright's decision to take a more strategic role in the business.

Wright currently oversees sourcing and distribution but intends to focus on larger, single projects, including the installation of a better accounting system.

Innocent continues to perform strongly in the UK. Its sales rose 81% to £116m in the year to 19 May 2007 [IRI Infoscan].

The company is confident of achieving another 50% to 60% growth in the coming year, and believes sales could double again.

International operations are scaling up fast. As well as the Republic of Ireland, Innocent smoothies are on sale in France, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Belgium and Luxembourg. The company is also eyeing Norway, Finland, Italy, Spain, Austria and Switzerland, and harbours plans for at least one new international office every year.

Expansion abroad is being managed by another of the three Innocent co-founders, Adam Balon, who said Innocent was keen to find high-calibre commercial staff for the countries where it operated.

"Internationally, finding really good commercial people is probably the most challenging area for us to recruit in," he said.

"The perfect person is experienced, smart, local, knows the category and can sell objectively."