Mark Gibson

Sales & Marketing Director, Redspire Ltd

IFSDG: How long have you worked in Redspire?

Mark: I met Billy Lyle, Redspire's founder and managing director 18 months ago and came on board full time at the beginning of 2018.

IFSDG: How many people work at Redspire?

Mark: We're approaching 40 people now and with accelerated growth plans in place, we aim to increase the team by a further 50% this year.

IFSDG: What is the vision for Redspire in Glasgow?

Mark: Currently top three, we aim to be the UK's number 1 CRM consultancy for Microsoft Dynamics and continue improving and transforming the Financial Services sector. The industry is shifting rapidly via digital innovation and open banking. Redspire is excited to be a valued trusted partner and part of the wider ecosystem driving enhanced operations, competitive differentiation and vastly improved customer experiences.

IFSDG: What's a typical day for you?

Mark: I travel a lot for client meetings but typically I'm up at 6:30am to let my dogs stretch their legs. If the weather is above 5 degrees, I'll be out early to ride my beloved Harley Davidson to work, which lets me beat rush hour traffic. I'm in City of London 2-3 days a week visiting clients and prospects.. My day is typically a mix of meetings and Skype calls. As a business, we work very closely with Microsoft, so my time is  split between collaborations, networking, prospecting and supporting the Redspire commercial team. My challenge is to ensure I'm leaving enough gaps during the day to respond to ad-hoc meetings.

IFSDG: Why did Redspire choose to locate in the IFSD in Glasgow?

Mark: It's a great, central location with fantastic transport links. Our customer base is primarily banking and financial services clients, so it makes a lot of sense to be right in the heart of the IFSD in Glasgow.

IFSDG: Three good things about working in Glasgow?

Mark: Great transport links and accessibility to customers, local and national. We have great homegrown tech talent and a rapidly expanding FinTech centre. Glasgow has always been a bit of a melting pot of really smart and successful people. I love the outdoors, so the best thing for me is that within an hour, you can go from being in the middle of a metropolitan business centre to being in the middle of nowhere, with some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, quite often (blissfully) no phone signal!

IFSDG: What is your biggest business achievement to date?

Mark: Being part of the growth and subsequent sale of Memex, a Scottish technology success story based out of East Kilbride. I was a member of the management team which grew the business to be the acknowledged leader in data analytics and enterprise search technology for police departments and other law enforcement agencies in EMEA. It was a fantastic journey which created so many opportunities for people within the business to elevate their careers, both within Scotland and internationally.

IFSDG: What is the best investment you ever made?

Mark: £20 on a blind date for a night out in the Merchant City, Glasgow, where I met my wife.

IFSDG: Which businessperson or company do you most admire and why?

Mark: There're two answers here. I've always admired Malcom Gladwell, most famous for his book "The Tipping Point". There's a consistent theme of optimism running through his work and he's a great story teller. More recently, I've been fortunate enough to see Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft present at Microsoft events. His vision and approach to 'refreshing' the culture at Microsoft blows me away.

IFSDG: What did you want to be when you were a child?

Mark: Initially a fighter pilot, but my eyesight let me down. If I could have my time again, I might've taken a different path into something like history or archaeology. My career in technology has allowed me to travel widely over the last 30 years, particularly in North America, Africa and the Middle East and work with some fascinating individuals - but you realise how nice it is to come home to Scotland.

IFSDG: What do you do to relax away from the office?

Mark: My idea of relaxation is quite the opposite! I enjoy bushcraft, survival and primitive skills courses, and have taken part in several with Ray Mears (recognised as being one of the very best experts in the world). The one thing I have succeeded in being more 'relaxed' about is not exercising every day. Ten years ago, I was a self-admitted gym-addict and I feel much better for not punishing myself if I miss a day of training! 

IFSDG: I-Phone or Android?

Mark: iPhone

IFSDG: Favourite band?

Mark: Happy Mondays or Lenny Kravitz.

IFSDG: Favourite sport?

Mark: Rugby Union

IFSDG: Favourite movie?

Mark: As Good as It Gets

IFSDG: Sunshine or snow?

Mark: Sunshine

IFSDG: and finally, what three words sum you up?

Mark: Energising, smart and humble.

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