Fari flourishing after Sunderland Software Centre move

A software business some of the world’s largest oil and gas companies among its clients is set for further growth after moving to Sunderland.

By Kevin Clark
Monday, 25 March, 2019, 05:00
(from left) Coun Graeme Miller; Mark Boyle, Technical Director at Fari Consulting and Martin Lawson, director at Fari Consulting.

Fari Consulting, founded by engineer Martin Lawson three years ago, has grown rapidly since moving to Sunderland Software Centre in December.

The company produces software that streamlines engineering procedures and in turn, improves safety, increases productivity and saves money.

Martin, who previously led a specialist software division at one of the USA’s largest engineering product and industrial equipment manufacturers, founded Fari at the height of the oil and gas crisis in February 2016 when the oil price was at its lowest at just under US$30 a barrel.

“That was exactly three years ago and a lot of the potential clients I was dealing with were very happy to come on board but just simply didn’t have the funding to do so,” he said.

“I stuck with it then basically after 12 months everything started to fall into place.

“We won one major contract and then another followed immediately after. Suddenly, everyone wanted to know what we were working on and interest really started to grow.”

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Initially setting up in Northumberland, Martin ran the company himself before taking on his two members of staff once Fari had secured its first contract.

“Being based in Northumberland was a great starting point as there were a lot of energy companies north of the Tyne however, we knew that in order to continue growing the business we would have to move,” he said.

He began looking at offices in Aberdeen, Newcastle and Northumberland, but it was his home city of Sunderland which proved the most attractive proposition.

“Having been born and raised in Sunderland, I know the city’s IT sector very well and I knew it had everything we needed to take Fari to the next level,” he said.

“We approached MAKE it Sunderland – delivered by Sunderland City Council - and we knew we’d found our new home as soon as we stepped foot in Sunderland Software Centre.

City Council leader Councillor Graeme Miller said: “The fact that Martin and the team chose Sunderland is testament to just how attractive the city has become to businesses in the technology sector.”