BEEKS Financial Cloud has held out the prospect of a significant increase in employment at its Glasgow base as the firm eyes more acquisitions after growing profits 11 per cent.

The financial technology firm increased underlying profits to £1.32 million in the year to June 30 from £1.19m in the preceding year amid growing demand for its services from big players.

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Beeks provides systems it reckons can help reduce the time taken to execute online trades in areas such as futures and fixed income by what could be vital milli-seconds.

Companies can utilise computers based in data centres run by Beeks around the world. These are connected to trading exchanges in places such as New York and Hong Kong.

After achieving success in the market to support small investors such as day-traders, Beeks has mounted a push to win business from institutions.

The company grew the number of institutional customers on its client list to 220 in the latest year from 192 in the preceding period.

Founder and chief executive Gordon McArthur said the company achieved a landmark in the final quarter of the year when it signed its first three customers from the Tier 1 ranks of global giants, without naming any of them.

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Aim market-listed Beeks told investors it had signed up “a financial services organisation from within the insurance sector, a global bank and a global investment management organisation”.

It has a strong pipeline of additional institutional contracts ahead.

After Beeks increased revenues by around a third in the latest year, to £7.35m from £5.58m, Mr McArthur reckons the company is well placed to maintain a strong growth rate.

He said the company expects to create around 15 jobs at its Glasgow base over the next 18 months to support expansion. Beeks employs 33 people currently, with most based in Glasgow.

This is home to the company’s software engineering team as well as key functions such as finance. Some sales-focused staff are based in overseas financial centres.

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“Our strategy is to run the entire organisation from Scotland,” said Mr McArthur. The company recently moved into a new office in Hillington with a much bigger footprint than its previous base.

Mr McArthur has noted that Beeks can recruit talented graduates in Scotland and accommodation costs in the country are relatively affordable.

His confidence in the outlook for growth partly reflects the size of the market Beeks operates in. The company reckons there are up to 20,000 institutions that are potential customers.

Beeks has been widening the range of asset trades it can support to help it win more business.

Mr McArthur sees scope to use acquisitions to support growth in a market he reckons is still very fragmented.

The company bought a California-based trading systems specialist, Commercial Network Services, in May for up to $1.4m. Beeks noted yesterday: “The acquisition of CNS adds both scale and cost-synergies to Beeks’ retail trader offering, and we will look to acquire other businesses that are profitable and will add additional resources.”

Mr McArthur said the company would consider bolt on acquisitions and bigger deals.

Asked if the company had any deals under consideration, he said: “We are always looking.”

Beeks operates in a sector in which economic development bodies see great potential for Scotland. Fintech firms in Scotland can capitalise on the fact the country has a vibrant technology scene and is home to major financial services players in the banking, asset management and life and pensions sectors.

A graduate of Glasgow Caledonian university, Mr McArthur founded Beeks in 2010 after 19 years working for technology companies such as IBM.

Shares in Beeks Financial Cloud closed up 1.5p at 81p.