Site navigation

DIGIT Movers and Shakers | April 2021

Ross Kelly

,

Movers and Shakers

In this edition of Movers and Shakers, we explore the latest recruitment and awards news from Scotland’s technology sector.

Recruitment

Hydrogen

Social media agency Hydrogen has appointed Nicky Logue as Managing Director as part of a number of managerial changes.

The new position sees her take on the day-to-day running of the company, as well as heading up a newly-created senior management team.

Previously in the role of Strategy Director, Logue led the Paid, Insights and Marketing departments at Hydrogen, developing customer-centric market strategies for clients across Hydrogen’s portfolio.

This move sees company founders Mike Scott and Daniel Rae move to groupwide roles as Hydrogen looks to extend its portfolio offering, with Scott taking up the role of CEO and Rae named Chief Innovation Officer.

Commenting on the announcement, Mike Scott said: “The ambition for Hydrogen has always been to continue to expand our offering into new areas and that’s something we aim to push forward with at pace in 2021.

“While remaining true to our core social media specialism, we’ve noticed a number of areas that remain unserved by the current Hydrogen approach and that’s something we are keen to address in the coming months, hence the need for structural changes within the business. During lockdown, rather than remaining static, we have moved forward with our plans to progress Nicky to the MD role.”

In a transition that has taken place over the last six months, Logue has taken the helm of the business, during which time Hydrogen has won a host of new business opportunities with global L&D and tech brands MindTools and Viavi, The Economist, City of Glasgow College and South Lanarkshire College.

During this time, the Hydrogen team has continued to expand, adding seven new team members to their outfit. With current projections for the business pointing to an 80% increase on turnover from 2020, this is an exciting time of growth.

Commenting on her appointment, Nicky Logue said: “I’m delighted to be able to build on the solid foundations Mike and Daniel have established in the last four years. Transitioning to the role while we’re all still physically apart has been a challenge, but we’ve got an exceptional team of people who continue to deliver excellent work, day in and out for our clients.

“We’ve got exciting plans in the making to be rolled out throughout 2021 and I’m really looking forward to seeing what Hydrogen can become.”


Optiseller

Optiseller announced six new key hires last month as the eCommerce firm continues to expand, with Brendan Waters joining as Chief Financial Officer.

An experienced chartered accountant, Waters boasts more than 20 years of experience working with entrepreneurial businesses and helping them grow.

Meanwhile, Louise Findlay joins as head of HR. She has been involved in the training sector for 18 years – most recently serving as HR/operations director at You Train, which grew to be Scotland’s leading technology apprenticeship training provider.

Also joining as full-time sales director is Stewart Runeckles.

Runeckles  has a wealth of experience in eCommerce, having worked with eBay for seven years before running his own consultancy business. Stewart will be working closely with Ashley Maroney, who has worked as a consultant with the company for 10 years and has been confirmed as head of partnerships.

On the technical and product side of things, Raymond Booth, who has been in a senior role at the company for many years, has been appointed as Optiseller’s new Chief Technical Officer.

Sam Clarke has joined Optiseller as senior product owner. Clarke has five years of experience as a product specialist and has worked in ecommerce for 16 years.

Optiseller COO Richard Falconer commented: “Optiseller is continuing with its ambitious expansion plans as demand for our services rapidly increases.

“These six new hires are seen as critical to the company’s future growth.  We have put in the right infrastructure to ensure we can service our customers and partners in the most efficient way possible.  We are working on a number of exciting projects which will be launched later this year and now we have the manpower to deliver them.”


Adarma

Dominique Cerutti, who was most recently CEO and Chair at global engineering giant Altran, has been announced as the new Chair at fast-growing UK cybersecurity solutions provider Adarma.

The appointment comes as Adarma continues to strengthen its senior leadership team and prime itself for future growth, having appointed ex-Cisco Global Vice President John Maynard as its new CEO in November last year.

In his role at Altran, Dominique oversaw the firm’s transformation into a €3.3bn revenue business and led the firm’s €3.6bn merger with consulting specialists Capgemini in 2019.

He has also first-hand experience when it comes to cyberattacks, with Altran falling victim to a comprehensive ransomware attack affecting its entire European operations in January 2019.

Prior to this, Dominique developed considerable expertise of global capital markets. Having spent four years as President of NYSE, he established Euronext as an independent company in 2013.

During his two years as CEO, he led the strategic repositioning of the exchange into the largest in continental Europe, and participated in the development of the MIFID II regulation. The early part of Dominique’s career was spent at IBM, with his time at the business spanning 20 years.

Dominique Cerruti, Chair at Adarma, said: “Cybersecurity is a fundamental priority for today’s organisations and threats are evolving at lightning speed.

“There remains a sense of complacency among boards when it comes to security, but I have seen first-hand the devastating circumstances that businesses can put themselves in by failing to give their cyber security posture the attention it deserves.

“This experience will prove invaluable when it comes to advising CXOs of other businesses both large and small, as I am acutely aware of the risks that are too often overlooked.”

Cerruti added: “As the cybersecurity market has grown, it has largely divided players into two areas – large conglomerates that have looked to take advantage of the growth, and more niche independents that were born in cyber. In my view, it is the latter that provide the real expertise, and Adarma fits that category perfectly.”


Forrit

Forrit, the next generation enterprise content management system (CMS), has appointed Sean Gordon as product manager to drive its product roadmap.

Gordon’s appointment also marks the next stage in the company’s evolution as it shifts from a service-led organisation to becoming more product focused whereby customers will be able to utilise the CMS platform on a self-service basis.

Following its rebrand last summer, Forrit has focused on enhancing its portal to ensure the fully integrated solution provides the best customer experience possible regardless of tech ability.

In this newly created role, Sean will work closely with the company’s CTO Doug Cunningham to enrich Forrit’s product offering by expanding the platform capabilities and refining the overall user experience.

During his 13 years at Chevron, Gordon was focused on enterprise-scale work as well as leading Chevron’s worldwide Technical Expert programme.

Prior to joining Chevron, Sean spent nine years with Microsoft Consulting Services designing and delivering complex technology solutions for global enterprise customers.

Commenting on Sean’s appointment, Doug Cunningham, CTO, Forrit, noted: “Sean’s technical experience is unrivalled, covering everything from solution architectures to integration. The pandemic has driven many businesses to accelerate their digital transformation programmes.

“However, in parallel, they still want to be able to have the opportunity to drive some of that change themselves using a self-service portal. At Forrit, Sean will be integral in pushing the boundaries of our product offering to ensure it is more accessible and will make sure that clients’ CMSs are fit for whichever purpose they need.”

Gordon added: “Joining such an innovative and agile company as Forrit will allow me to rekindle my passion for product development and give me the opportunity to help develop world-leading technology. The team has already achieved considerable results for their clients and my job will be to build on this to extend the platform to deliver the innovative capabilities our clients demand.”

In addition to his role with Forrit, Sean will continue his 20+ year role a member of the ScotlandIS Young Software Engineer of the Year judging panel.


iomart

Cloud computing company iomart has further strengthened its senior leadership team with the appointment of a new Chief Operating Officer.

Neil Christie, who had been running the Infrastructure as a Service side of the iomart business, will now take responsibility for the Group’s day-to-day operations, reporting into CEO Reece Donovan.

Christie has worked in the cloud computing industry for over 10 years. He is focussed on building a culture of quality, service delivery excellence and innovation by developing the systems, skills and processes required to support iomart and its customers.

After training as a chartered accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers, Neil jointly ran a web hosting company, which iomart acquired in 2011. He is a member of the technical and IT faculty committees for the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

Reece Donovan, CEO, commented: “I am delighted Neil has accepted this new position within our  senior management team. He knows iomart from the inside and has excellent commercial knowledge of the market in which we operate.

“We will be working closely together to enhance our structure and processes in order to deliver on our long-term growth strategy.”

Christie added: I am excited to be working with Reece to take forward his vision for iomart.  I will be supporting the talented teams we have across the business and bringing together all parts of the Group to deliver on our strategy of service excellence and further growth.”

Neil’s appointment follows the recent announcement by iomart of a new Chief Marketing Officer, Sharon Mars Leach, to strengthen its brand positioning within the growing marketplace for cloud services.


CityFibre

CityFibre has appointed a new lead for its full fibre rollout in Edinburgh.

Paul Wakefield has joined the telecoms specialist to spearhead the project in Scotland’s capital, replacing Elaine Doherty who has moved to a new role as CityFibre’s Head of Data Insight.

As City Manager, Wakefield will be the main point of contact between stakeholders and the CityFibre team, ensuring the project continues to be implemented with minimal disruption to Edinburgh communities.

Wakefield, who started his career as a police officer with the Metropolitan Police in London, is a well-known figure in Edinburgh.

He spent almost six years as Head of Marketing & Partnerships at Marketing Edinburgh and was previously Director of Operations & Communications at Scottish Land & Estates and prior to that headed up marketing for national property firm Bell Ingram.

Commenting on his appointment, Wakefield said: “I’ve been hugely impressed by the work CityFibre has done to date across the UK. I was there at the launch in Edinburgh in 2018 and it’s a real honour to be given the responsibility of leading this vital project.

“Elaine and her team have forged a strong partnership with The City of Edinburgh Council and built positive, long lasting relationships across many of the city’s communities, and I will seek to build on that.”

Elaine Doherty, Head of Data Insights at CityFibre, added: “Paul knows Edinburgh inside and out, and has the right skills and experience to drive the project forward for the benefit of households and businesses across the city.

“Our ‘fibre to the premises’ programme is going to be a game changer in Edinburgh and nobody is better placed than Paul to drive home the message and help people discover more about the impact this investment will have on Edinburgh’s digital future.”


KPMG

KPMG has promoted 53 people across its Scottish offices as it plans for post-lockdown growth.

The firm, which employs more than 1,200 people in Scotland, has promoted 14 Assistant Managers, 25 Managers, 11 Senior Managers and three new Directors including; Audit Director, Madeline Grant and FS Consulting Director Martin Douglas, who will be based in Edinburgh, and Glasgow-based Deal Advisory Director, Colin Boyd.

Commenting on his promotion, Martin Douglas said: “The last year has been incredibly challenging for businesses in Scotland and they’ve depended on our expertise to support them through every stage of the pandemic – from resilience to recovery. I’m proud to have been part of KPMG throughout that period.

The promotions come at a pivotal moment for KPMG as the firm reports a significant increase in activity across all areas of its business.

Last month, KPMG forecast Scotland’s wider economy could completely re-gain ground lost in the pandemic, within two years, slightly outpacing the return to growth elsewhere in the UK.

Catherine Burnet, KPMG’s Regional Chair in Scotland, commented: “There’s a growing sense that Scotland’s economy is beginning to move again. As restrictions continue to ease and businesses open back up, we should start to see a significant uptick in wider business activity.

“The recent return to growth is reflected in our promotions, with a total of 53 colleagues recognised this month across our three offices and across all areas of the firm, including Audit, Deal Advisory, Tax and Legal, and Consulting.”

Burnet added: “More than ever before, our clients rely on KPMG’s wealth of expertise and talent to support them through the challenge of Covid-19 and help them find a path out of the pandemic towards recovery and long-term growth.

“I’m incredibly proud of the talented individuals within the Scottish practice and I have no doubt we’re the best placed firm to support the country’s business community as it navigates through the challenges and opportunities that will arise as Scotland slowly emerges from lockdown.”


Zumo

Zumo has announced that Liam Birch has joined the team as Senior Product Owner.

Birch joins the Zumo team at a time of massive growth in the crypto space. He will be instrumental in leveraging the brand’s continued success as it moves past 50,000 users and launches the Zumo Convertible debit card.

Reporting to Chief Product Officer Paul Roach, Birch joins Zumo after spending two successful years working in Berlin as Senior Product Manager at Bitwala.

Speaking about his decision to join Zumo, Liam said: “I’m truly excited to be joining Zumo at a time of such rapid change and growth. I am looking forward to further contributing to the mass retail adoption of cryptocurrency in the UK and across the world.

“I want cryptocurrency to stop being thought of as a speculative investment, but instead an important part of any long-term investment portfolio. I would like to assist in educating our users on the benefits and the simplicity of trading cryptocurrency, so that they can enjoy the benefits that more and more people around the world are discovering every day.”

Paul Roach, chief product officer, added: “This year has already been a historic one for Bitcoin and the wider crypto industry. In 2021, Zumo will be launching new products and features as well as making exciting new announcements. Liam will be instrumental in delivering all of these.”


Grünenthal

Grünenthal. headquartered in Aachen, Germany, has expanded its UK footprint even further with the appointment of Megan Reutin (formerly Hughes) as their Global Head of Omnichannel Analytics.

In her new role, Reutin will ensure customer experience is market-leading and entirely data-driven.

Commenting on her appointment, Reutin said: “One thing both I and Grünenthal have in common is a love of, and a passion for innovation – not only is this extremely exhilarating in itself – I’ll be able to bring this through data, analytics and data science capabilities.

“The company’s purpose is to change lives for the better and I believe that’s a great ethos to have.”

Reutin added: “What’s more is that I know what the local data ecosystem is capable of, and we’re now an integral part of it.”

Florent Edouard, Global Head of Commercial Excellence, added: “We’ve made strides in our data progress and now we’re upping our game.”

Grünenthal is a global leader in pain management and related diseases whose purpose is to change lives for the better.


Inoapps

Inoapps, has announced two new senior appointments to accompany its on-going growth in the US and other global markets.

The Aberdeen-headquartered company, a global Oracle Partner, has bolstered its US-based technology team with the appointment of Justin Gatlin as its Vice President of Technology Sales.

After 18 years at IBM, latterly serving as its Director Cloud Services for the Asia Pacific region, Justin joined US-based Velocity Technology where he led business development.

Inoapps has also recruited Chris Wilson as EMEA Sales Director – Technology. Joining from London-based Logicalis, where he was the Sales and Practice Director, Chris will focus on maximising the company’s UK revenue and growing its technology business.

Commenting on the new appointments, Inoapps founder and Global CEO, Andy Bird, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Justin and Chris, two talented and highly experienced technology sector professionals, as we continue to grow the Inoapps team across the globe.”

James Anthony, Inoapps Chief Technology Officer, added: “Justin’s industry knowledge and experience in leading business development, alliances and the transformation to a cloud managed service provider model will be a major asset in helping us further grow Inoapps’ presence across the US.

“Chris brings a wealth of UK and global technology sector knowledge, including in-depth experience in the Oracle ecosystem, which will be invaluable in supporting Inoapps’ ongoing growth across EMEA and other global markets.”


Exception

Exception has bolstered its sales operations with the appointment of Alison McLaughlin as Sales Director.

McLaughlin, who joins from Sopra Steria having recently completed a two-year secondment as part of the Digital Transformation Team in Scottish Government, is joining Exception’s leadership team to support the company’s future growth ambitions.

Commenting on the appointment, Exception CEO Scott McGlinchey said: “Having increased our sales capability over the last year, it’s fantastic to bring someone of Alison’s experience and calibre into the company to lead and enhance our business development capability and I am delighted she chose to join us.”

McLaughlin added: “I am excited to be joining Exception and looking forward to working with the team to build on the company’s success to realise their ambitious growth plans.”

Alison was also recently appointed as Chair of ScotlandIS, further demonstrating her expertise and dedication to Scotland’s technology sector.


Ionburst

Ionburst has announced two high-profile advisor appointments, with Rear Admiral Steve Brunton joining alongside Steve Wilkinson, Data Protection Subject Matter Expert at the UK Cabinet Office Government Digital Service (GDS).

Now operating as an Independent Advisor to a number of Government and Industry organisations, Rear Admiral Brunton’s military career included ship building, and submarine systems, Information Infrastructure and Crypto procurement.

Steve Wilkinson is advisor to the UK Government Cabinet Office on Data Privacy and has worked extensively with both the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), as well as Henley Business School, where he is the only lecturer on Data Privacy.

They join during a significant growth period at Ionburst, as it builds its UK and overseas business, with offices in the United States and Australia.

Commenting on the appointments, Ionburst Founder Dr David Lanc said: “The Cloud needs a new philosophy for protecting the privacy of mission critical information and workloads.

“We have developed a best-in-class data protection solution to empower this, and its relevance is supported by these powerful industry leaders strengthening our advisory team.”

Rear Admiral Steve Brunton CBE said: “I’m excited to join the Ionburst journey. I believe Ionburst has the ability to help protect us and our way of life in the digital world.

“I look forward to working with the Ionburst team to help engage with Government and the Defence sector, and to help navigate the next phase of the company’s growth.”

Steve Wilkinson commented: “Ionburst is at the forefront of data security, privacy and sovereignty. In my experience, it’s unique in solving the well-known issues of data privacy compliance and protection from unwanted surveillance in one solution.

“This is vital to preserve the privacy of sensitive information, which has been made more critical with the EU Court of Justice recently invalidating the EU-US data privacy shield and Brexit.”

Lanc added: “We have big ambitions to help industry and government protect citizen and sensitive data in a world that also demands carbon efficiency. Welcoming Steve and Steve as distinguished advisors demonstrates our aspirations.”


TyreRunner

Online tyre price comparison and booking platform TyreRunner announced the appointment of tyre industry veteran Gavin Marshall to its board of directors.

Marshall joined just weeks after TyreRunner revealed plans to double headcount following an 800% growth in usage of its platform.

Marshall was previously the CEO of Middlesbrough-based North Eastern Tyres & Exhausts (NETE) which he successfully sold to Stapleton’s Tyres, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Itochu corporation of Japan, parent company to Kwik-fit.

Commenting on his new appointment, Marshall said: “I’m delighted to be joining TyreRunner.com at such a pivotal point in their journey. Online tyre sales have historically been a niche sales channel for retailers but it feels like the tide is firmly turning on in 2021 and TyreRunner.com is poised to really accelerate that for retailers large and small.”

Launched in 2019, Edinburgh based TyreRunner.com has quickly gained traction as consumers increasingly choose to shop online.

Bryan MacMillan, CEO of TyreRunner added: “Gavin has worked in every corner of the tyre industry from manufacture, to wholesale distribution and retail tyre and autocare; his expertise will be invaluable to help steer our growth in the years ahead.

“Our aim for TyreRunner.com is to expand our same-day online booking facility so that every town in the UK has a same-day mobile or in-centre fitting option available to them within a five-mile radius; Gavin’s deep knowledge of the retail and wholesale supply chains will be key to us achieving that ambition.”


Awards & Recognition

Neatebox / WelcoME App

Accessibility app WelcoMe by Neatebox has secured a prestigious win for Scotland at UN-backed World Summit Awards 2020, snapping up the Inclusion and Empowerment Award and announced as the only UK business within the WSA Global Top 40.

The World Summit Awards select and promote digital solutions that address global issues and improve society. Backed by the UN and following a rigorous assessment programme, the final jury of 43 internationally recognised experts selected 40 solutions from 26 countries, announcing the winners last month.

The winning organisations were diverse, and united by their impactful solutions for local communities, their technical finesse and strength in design and all receive the WSA globally recognised quality seal for digital innovation.

WelcoMe is a web-based service from Edinburgh-based disability solutions provider Neatebox.

WelcoMe helps disabled people access customer experiences in ways that meet their needs, improving communication between customer-facing staff and people with disabilities. The digital solution links venues with customers, giving real-time advice on giving the best service to individuals tailored to their disability and their reasons for visiting.

This award is important because WelcoMe’s win further cements the UK’s position as global digital front-runners and central to the digital accessibility conversation.

Furthermore it highlights the need for businesses to be responsive to their customers’ needs, safety and comfort in the continuing public-health crisis. It helps us understand that safe, affordable solutions are available to help us all be more-disability aware.

Neatebox Founder and CEO, Gavin Neate comments: “The entire team at Neatebox has worked tirelessly to bring WelcoMe into existence. WelcoMe is a service which will truly revolutionise the way in which society interacts with its disabled members.

“To be recognised at any time is fantastic but to represent your country and win a World Summit Award for Inclusion and Empowerment at a time when disabled people are under such dreadful strain due to the effects of Covid-19 is truly inspiring for us all.”

Neate added: “We very much hope that this award will raise awareness of what is possible and lead to us working with those countries and businesses who see the provision of services for disabled and vulnerable people as a reflection of their international standing in the world.”


Edinburgh Innovations

A woman who has transformed commercialisation of medical research at the University of Edinburgh has been named Knowledge Exchange Hero 2021 in the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards.

Dr Andrea Taylor heads the medicine and veterinary medicine team at Edinburgh Innovations, the university’s commercialisation service.

The pace of commercialisation at the university’s College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine has grown rapidly under Dr Taylor’s leadership over the past three years.

The one-team approach between the College and Edinburgh Innovations that Dr Taylor has championed has led to a greater culture of innovation, with early career researchers supported through new programmes of training and development, significant increase in industry outreach and a broadening of the relationships developed.

Commenting on the award, Dr Taylor said: “It’s an honour to accept this award which reflects the dedication of our excellent team at Edinburgh Innovations and the entrepreneurial talents of the university’s leading researchers.”

Dr Taylor has led multiple initiatives at Edinburgh Innovations to strengthen the entrepreneurial culture among university researchers and encourage external organisations to collaborate with academics, leveraging funding schemes such as the Wellcome Trust Institutional Translational Partnership Award (iTPA) and the Medical Research Council’s Confidence in Concept award.

Dr George Baxter, CEO of Edinburgh Innovations, said: “Andrea is an exceptional champion of knowledge exchange, inspiring both her colleagues and our clients and collaborators. This award is well-deserved recognition of her exceptional work, which ultimately leads to innovations that benefit society.”

The Knowledge Exchange Heroes award was one of eight categories in the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards 2021 presented by Interface, the business-academic matching service.

Dr Siobhán Jordan, Director of Interface, said. “The judges were incredibly humbled and impressed by the innovation and creativity, exemplar partnerships and overall impacts of the applications across all eight categories.

“From responses to the Covid-19 crisis, to breakthrough technologies in health, circular economy and poultry genetics, the winners announced today are an impressive showcase of the incredible collaborative work which goes on every day in Scotland, and a celebration of the people behind the partnerships from all industry sectors and across all academic disciplines.

“They bring renewed admiration for knowledge sharing between businesses, social enterprises, public bodies, such as the NHS, universities and colleges across Scotland.”


Flavourly

Scottish online craft beer specialist Flavourly celebrated another major milestone in April as it dispatched its millionth shipment of craft beer.

In celebration, the co-founder Assean Sheikh personally delivered it to the lucky customer, Bill Harvey, who was gifted it for free.

The Edinburgh-based business was founded by Assean and Ryan O’Rorke back in 2012 from Ryan’s grans garage.

Demand for its at home craft beer deliveries continue to rise this year following a trebling of sales to over £10 million in 2020 with no signs of slowing down in 2021.

Commenting on the occasion, Flavourly co-founder and CMO Assean Sheikh said: “Today was absolutely one of my career highlights; to be able to personally deliver our millionth shipment is such a privilege and even although we are incredibly busy I wanted to recognise the significance of this milestone achievement.

“The icing on the cake was being able to share the moment with Bill and to gift him his order.”

Bill Harvey, Flavourly customer and recipient of the one millionth shipment said: “I’ve really been enjoying my Flavourly boxes there’s lots of variety of beers and I haven’t had a bad beer yet, in particular I’m a fan of the IPA range.”

Thanks to strong growth in 2020 Flavourly were able to sign the lease on a new 17,500 sq. foot warehouse at Glasgow Airport Business Park, giving easy access to the motorway network.

At the same time the company moved its entire delivery operations to DPD – making it the only craft beer supplier to offer Free DPD delivery as standard.

Ross Kelly

Staff Writer

Latest News

Recruitment Technology
Artificial Intelligence News
%d bloggers like this: