A Sunderland-based start-up has received £150,000 investment to support its spin out from alternative energy service provider Green Marine Solutions (GMS). The funding comes from the Finance for Business North East Accelerator Fund, managed by Northstar Ventures.
The spin out, called Profile, has developed an online platform directly connecting hiring managers, candidates and training providers in real time and at point of need. It is intended to be used by individuals and organisations operating in the marine and offshore oil & gas industries. The platform allows users to maintain up-to-date records of their professional certifications, which are a vital part of their employability.
The Profile platform has been designed by Mark Swift, previously a director at GMS, to address the inefficiencies in the current model of recruiting. It aims to shorten recruitment cycle time, improve candidate matching and save costs in sectors requiring high level certification and involving fast turnaround contracts. In order to scale the technology and capitalise on the opportunities it presents, Mark will now lead the newly formed company as CEO.
Mark said: “Having worked in the nautical industry for almost 15 years, it became apparent to me that traditional methods of recruiting were not suited to the specialised roles firms are trying to fill. The Profile platform allows individuals, who often attend at least one training course a year, to keep their professional records up to date. Employers can then easily search the platform based on the qualifications they require for a specific role.
“The investment from Northstar Ventures will allow us to make some key hires as we launch the platform across Europe. We are also in talks with several international training providers who are interested in advertising the courses they offer, directly through our platform.”
Sean Kelly, Investment Manager at Northstar Ventures, said: “Mark’s experience both at GMS and in the marine industry prior to that make him the ideal person to spin out and scale the Profile platform.
“There is no doubt that the technology offers unquestionable value for companies looking to recruit new personnel. This combined with the time saved searching forcandidates equates to a substantial cost saving for the typical business.
“Our investment will allow Mark to expand his team and develop the iOS version of the platform. We are confident that Profile will have a big impact in recruitment for specialised industries and look forward to working closely with Mark and his team on their new venture.”