‘Appy’ entrepreneur Gary is in UK’s top 100

TOP 100: Phone app entrepreneur Gary McFarlane.
TOP 100: Phone app entrepreneur Gary McFarlane.
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A CITY entrepreneur who won an Echo Portfolio Award last year has been named one of the 100 most influential people in the country with a disability.

Gary McFarlane was placed among household names, including Professor Stephen Hawking and Dame Tanni Grey Thompson, to make the first-ever “Power 100 List – Britain’s Most Influential People with a Disability or Impairment” in association with the Shaw Trust.

Gary, 42, who suffers from restricted-limb movement, relocated to Sunderland from London to co-found smartphone app assist-Mi, with business partner Neil Herron.

He has now been listed in the Business, Finance and IT section after being chosen by a panel of experts around matters of disability.

The app allows disabled people to request assistance from participating service providers directly from their phone, and won the pair last year’s Sunderland Echo Portfolio Award for Technology.

“The barriers facing disabled people in the UK are often quite daunting, whether it be gaining employment, setting up a business or even just going about daily activities and engaging with service and transport providers,” Gary said.

“Being included in the Power 100 list is a great honour. We have spent many years building our solution to help overcome the barriers faced by disabled people and service providers, by using simple, enabling technology in a smart way.”