Digi hubs appealing

Digi hubs appealing

One New Zealand firm has set up an operation in Newcastle and is thriving.

Spotlight Reporting was set up in 2012 in Wellington, New Zealand, by accountant Richard Francis.

His aim was to present financial information in an easily digestible and understandable format by taking advantage of moves towards online reporting. It puts financial information into graphical formats to explain reports such as profit and loss accounts, or any other key performance data.

About a year ago Darren Glanville set up Spotlight Reporting’s UK operation based in The Toffee Factory Newcastle and since then the team has expanded to five.

“We look to expand that over the next three to six months to probably include between eight and 10 people,’’ says Glanville. “In growth, we’re over 170% up on where we were this time last year. Revenues have almost tripled in terms of what we have done over the last 12 months.

He estimates that between 60% and 70% of the business comes through accounting practices. Glanville worked for a number of New Zealand technology businesses before joining Spotlight Reporting, including five years with the New Zealand Cloud-based accountancy software business Xero.

“There’s something about the technology and that drive to make things really simple yet really effective coming from New Zealand,’’ he says. “We see that wave of tech businesses coming out and establishing themselves and it’s so innovative and disruptive to traditional technology.’’

So why choose the North East? “It’s not just London that’s attracting Kiwis, it’s also the North East,’’ he explains. “It’s a great tech and digital hub. Generally in a New Zealand business people look to have a London HQ but the North East is a great cost base, we can get great premises.