News and media

Harper Macleod helps First Minister launch Geniac

Harper Macleod, one of Scotland's leading law firms, was delighted to join First Minister Alex Salmond to launch Geniac, a new fully managed business services platform for startups and SMEs across the UK.

Geniac is looking to recruit up to 385 highly skilled professional services jobs in the city over the next three years.

The start-up will offer accounting, insurance, legal and HR services to SMEs, so entrepreneurs and business owners can focus on the development and growth of their enterprises. Geniac will collaborate with leading UK outsourcing business, Webhelp UK, as an investor and partner for global service delivery.

Harper Macleod is also a key supporter and has helped design its legal solutions with the aim of changing how small businesses source their legal services.

Speaking from the Citizen M Hotel in Glasgow, where the idea for Geniac originated, the First Minister said: "By taking care of some of the day-to-day tasks SMEs face, Geniac will free up those who run businesses to focus on what matters most – growing their businesses. Our Small Business Bonus Scheme removed or reduced taxation for over 92,000 premises in 2013-14 - up almost 4,000 from the year before.

"The Scottish Government is constantly working to make sure Scotland is the best place in the UK to do business, and I'm delighted companies like Geniac are taking advantage of it."

Professor Lorne Crerar, Chairman of Harper Macleod, also addressed the audience at the launch event, highlighting the firm's commitment to innovation and finding new ways to service the legal needs of clients and businesses, along with its commitment to creating new employment opportunities for Scotland's legal graduates.

Geniac was founded by entrepreneurs and business consultants Eduardo Martinez and Michael Galvin, who first met at Accenture more than 10 years ago. The observations and experiences gleaned throughout their careers led Eduardo and Michael to discover a gap in the market for a fully managed professional services platform to support growing businesses.

Michael Galvin, Geniac co-founder explains how the service works: "We believe that if you take away the 'pain' of business - the day-to-day essential services such as contracts, accounts, compliance issues, pensions and insurance - then the owner and driving force of the business is freed up to get on with what they want to do best - grow, nurture and develop their business."

Eduardo Martinez, Geniac co-founder added: "We chose Glasgow as the base for our first Geniac centre because of the wealth of talent, support and academic acumen that exists in Scotland. Working with the Scottish Government and our partners Webhelp UK and Harper Macleod enables us to draw on firmly cemented networks and expertise that together will support us in fostering SME and startup growth throughout the UK.

"In addition, through our relationship with Startup Grind Scotland, we have started building strong ties with the local entrepreneurial community and look forward to enabling these new Scottish businesses reach their full potential."

Lena Wilson, Chief Executive, Scottish Enterprise, said: "We are delighted to support Geniac's growth through Regional Selective Assistance, creating 385 new jobs in Glasgow. The fact that the company identified Scotland as the premier location for their business also strengthens our position as a key location for business services.

"We look forward to continuing our work with Geniac as they build their operations here in Scotland."