Douglas Shand
Douglas Shand

Two new heavyweights signed up as mentor executives SCALE: Edinburgh

PwC’s SCALE: Edinburgh initiative has announced the latest two mentor executives who will help guide the country’s next generation of scale-up firms.

Ian Ritchie, chairman of cloud services provider iomart, and digital strategist Sorcha Lorimer, will bring their expertise to the 10-week programme.

SCALE: Edinburgh – a partnership between CodeBase and PwC – aims to provide the missing link between corporates looking to innovate and companies looking to scale, by providing access to decision makers and influencers within PwC and other large organisations.

SCALE will deliver meaningful relationships for scale-ups with C-suite executives and innovation leaders as part of the extended executive network supporting the programme. Ultimately, this is the community that can provide strategic advice and help source customers and investment.

Participants on the programme will undergo a business development curriculum, receive advice across areas like Tax, R&D, Legal and PwC areas of specialism as well as access to CodeBase’s extended community of experts and the combined professional network.

The mentor executives will share their knowledge and work with the participants to overcome any hurdles they are facing.

Ian Ritchie comes to SCALE with considerable experience in building up Scotland as a centre for innovative high growth technology companies. He has personally invested in over 40 start-ups and served on the boards of Scottish Enterprise, the Scottish Funding Council and as co-chair of the Scottish Science Advisory Board in addition to being the chairman of iomart Group PLC and Krotos Ltd.

Ian Ritchie said:

“It’s promising to see programmes like SCALE, which recognise that problems for firms don’t end once they’ve just passed the start-up stage. If anything, it’s that next stage which is even more important, where access to a wider range of expertise can be critical to their future.

“There’s been a lot of recognition of late around the issues scale-ups face, so it’s good to see CodeBase and PwC getting involved here as there will be some interesting perspectives that both can bring – along with insight from the likes of myself and the other executives.”

Also taking part is Sorcha Lorimer, ex-Head of Digital Strategy (Global Communications) for Standard Life and now co-founder of Sympatico Consulting, which aims to help brands in the digital age and deliver compliant communications.

With a strong background in digital marketing and strategy, Sorcha will help attendees realise how they can make sure they are making full use of omnichannel engagement to drive results.

Sorcha said:

“For a long time, many start-ups believed their product was the PR and marketing – build a good product and the rest would take care of itself. But as we’ve seen over the years, an astute company can do more than that, ensuring they are getting more exposure through their marketing efforts.

“But it’s also got to tie back to business goals and be compliant with any regulatory issues – something more companies need to be aware of when working across the globe.”

Douglas Shand, Head of Innovation for PwC in Scotland, said:

“Ian and Sorcha are great examples of what SCALE is about. It’s not about people from PwC or CodeBase coming in and selling their services or talking about themselves, it’s a truly collaborative engagement effort that aims to identify the main issues scale-ups need to solve to get to the next level of growth and success.”