Publish Interactive, which provides e-publishing software solutions for market research publishers, moved its then small team into the Round Foundry Media Centre in 2009 and in just three years has quadrupled its staff, winning a host of industry accolades as well as a raft of international clients.
The business was founded in 2003 by technology industry analyst Daniel Lord, who was frustrated that market research reports containing charts, data tables and commentary were flattened and sold as PDF files. This format prevented users from accessing and extracting information in the way they needed to, so Daniel built a prototype of an interactive platform which presented reports in a highly flexible, user-friendly format instead – storing each component of a report separately instead of saving the whole report as a flat file. Publishers pay a monthly subscription for the software, which can be branded and integrated into their own website, and is also used by their customers – the multi-national corporations who purchase market research.
Daniel sold the first version of the technology to what was then Reuters Business Insight, which increased its revenue by over 32% as a direct result. By 2008, Daniel had invested in a skilled team of experts to add ever-greater functionality to his cutting-edge system and market it, including Chief Software Architect Garry Ferguson and Business Development and Commercial Director, Emma Forber. The still small team worked from temporary space at Leeds Innovation Centre, but as the business took off, they began to consider investing in their own offices so that they could expand the company.
Comments Emma: “I already knew of the Round Foundry Media Centre and its reputation as ‘the’ place where the most up-and-coming creative companies are located in Leeds, but we weren’t completely sure if it was the right time for us to move to bigger offices. However, as soon as we looked around the Centre and the surrounding area, we just loved the atmosphere and vibe – there were so many like-minded companies and individuals working with such enthusiasm and motivation to grow their businesses – we knew it was the right place for us. The high-speed broadband was also a key factor for us – not just to ensure the successful delivery of our own software, but also because we needed an infrastructure that could reliably support regular online conferences and meetings with our clients, particularly those in the US.
“Locating here was the best decision we could have made as having more space meant we were forced to take the business to the next level and grow into it. As our client-base increased, so did our team and we knocked through into the office next door and created a fabulous, funky open-plan office. We’ve employed five people in the last month alone, we’re still recruiting, and in the last few months we’ve even knocked through into a third office. It’s fantastic that the management team and landlord here are so supportive of our growth. In the last four years we’ve increased our revenue by 400% and if business keeps booming – who knows, we could be taking over half of the building before long!”
Publish Interactive hopes the success continues, and are confident that it will with the new staff and even bigger office. Their customers already include Decision Resources Group, Kline & Company, Espicom, Canadean and Technomic, and the focus for the next year is consolidating sales in North America, a market which is very well-suited to the company’s product and service. With plenty of ideas for developing their unique software even further, the future looks bright.