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Name: Gauld Lance.
What is your company’s name?
IT for Cloud Cover.
Where it’s based.
On Bridgeton, in Glasgow’s East End.
What facilities does it offer?
Cloud Cover IT lets its clients get the most out of their IT and operational technology systems.
To whom is the business selling?
For corporations, charities and other organizations in Scotland, nationally and increasingly internationally, we provide services and create software.
What’s the turnover there?
2 million kilos.
How many workforce?
The exemption scheme offered the ability for certain treacherous waters to be navigated. I am proud to say that we came out better from this initiative and took back the furloughed workers without any layoffs.
When was the firm founded?
In 2012, I formed Cloud Cover, where we concentrated on IT infrastructure in the central belt of Scotland for SMEs. We have grown into a variety of fields since then, including software development, and I now run the company with my son Alasdair, who joined us in 2019.
Why the move did you make?
I have worked for 25 years as an independent IT expert, creating a large customer base and reputation. I thought I wanted to expand my company after so long, so I created Cloud Cover, initially with only three employees. To have the future of those workers in my hands was certainly a new experience for me, and that’s something you always have to be mindful of, especially now with 33 staff.
It was around the time my kids quit full-time school to start Cloud Cover, and somehow that removed the risk burden from me to have to provide for them.
What did you do before the plunge into self-employment took place?
I worked for a year in a photocopier company after I left school, but I did not appreciate the hard selling. In Glasgow and Edinburgh, I have spent a large part of my life offering IT services and support to a variety of companies. It began to consume my life, although I really enjoyed it and my customers were my passion, and I had to re-evaluate whether I should stop or expand the company into a larger, more professional enterprise.
How did you generate money for startups?
Initially, with some funding from early clients to help get it off the ground, Cloud Cover IT was mostly self-funded. As the company grew, we received very good advice from the Economic Development Team and Regeneration Services of Glasgow City Council, who helped us apply for funding from Scottish Enterprise. We have recently become a company mentored by Scottish Enterprise, which is a great support for accelerating business growth.
We were successful in applying for RSA (Regional Selective Assistance) funding, thanks to the help of Glasgow City Council and Scottish Enterprise. In just over 12 months, this was instrumental in helping us to expand from 18 to 31 employees. We started our relationship with UK Steel Enterprise (UKSE) and Business Loans Scotland during this time, both of which have been invaluable in securing funding to develop the company. We would not have been able to expand so quickly without their assistance.
During the COVID 19 freeze, our whole team was remarkably united and we are lucky to be in a better financial position than many businesses who were hit harder.
We are prepared to continue to develop the company and to embrace the improvements that our clients are making to allow for better remote collaboration. During the lockdown, we secured innovation funding that will allow us to finalize exciting new products that we believe have global sales potential and respond directly to the new challenges businesses are facing.
Our team has recently created many solutions that help small businesses become safer. We are also working on systems that alert office managers when someone in their building has an elevated temperature.
What has been your biggest breakthrough?
With the support of the right people and consultants, about three years ago we were able to make important changes to the way the Cloud Cover IT g