Leeds-based BigChange plans to increase workforce to 500 people as it appoints new chief executive

The Yorkshire-based mobile workforce management technology company BigChange plans to increase its workforce to 500 people as it prepares for growth under a new chief executive.

Martin Port
Martin Port

BigChange has announced that Martin Port, the founder and CEO, is to move into a new role as chairman.

Richard Warley, who joined the business as chairman at the start of 2021, will become the new CEO, to lead the company into the next phase of its development. The business, which has achieved nine years of consistent growth, is preparing to expand rapidly across multiple international markets and is building the next generation of its technology platform.

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BigChange’s field service management technology is a workflow tool for businesses employing field service technicians and operators. The tools provide job scheduling, customer invoicing and payments automation, mobile workforce management, and client engagement.

The company’s platform serves 1,600 small to medium-sized enterprise clients across 20 industries, from plant hire to food service.

Clients include Sunbelt Rentals, Silentnight, Recycling Lives, HSS and EDF.

Mr Port said he was proud to have created a business that is on course to become a unicorn; a privately held startup company valued at more than $1 billion.

“Businesses grow stronger when they run on BigChange,’’ he added.

Mr Port, who founded the company in 2013, added: “I couldn’t be more confident that Richard is the ideal person to take on the day-to-day running of the business.

“He is passionate about BigChange, he’s taken the time to get to know our people and our culture, and he has an extraordinary depth of experience running billion-pound companies.

“It is our hope that, together, we can help BigChange to reach this milestone – unicorn status – in just a few years. We currently employ over 200 people around the world, and we hope to take that figure to 500 people.

“This is a really exciting time for both me and for BigChange. I feel as though I have had a promotion and relish the prospect of a new challenge.

“My ambitions for BigChange have only intensified over the last few years and I know that, with Richard by my side, we have the best chance of executing our plan to become the leading mobile workforce management platform in every market we target around the world.”

Mr Warley has around 30 years’ of experience in investment banking, private equity and operational leadership roles at technology companies across Europe, Japan and North America.

Mr Warley said: “Martin has built a really special company that combines great technology with a very big heart and an absolute focus on making the world a better place for its customers and the people who work here.

“I’m excited about the scale of the opportunity out there for BigChange – both in terms of the size of addressable market and the breadth of technological solutions we can bring our customers."

Mr Warley added: “Martin is an evangelist for the business and a great strategic thinker.

“My role is about taking this business to the next level and ensuring that we preserve all that is brilliant about BigChange’s culture while evolving into a much larger entity.

“I am going to continue to develop JobWatch’s functionality and relevance to the market, all while maintaining our focus on customer success and excellent service.”

In February, BigChange revealed that US-based Great Hill Partners, the private equity firm behind Wayfair, ZoomInfo and Reward Gateway, had invested significant capital in the business to support growth and innovation.

Great Hill Partners is a Boston-based private equity firm targeting investments of $25 million to $500 million in high-growth companies across the consumer, digital infrastructure, financial technology, healthcare, and software sectors.

Following the deal, BigChange’s management team retained a significant minority stake in the company, which is now valued at £100 million.

Speaking in February, Drew Loucks, a Partner at Great Hill Partners, said: “Unlike niche players that focus on smaller customers and specific sub-verticals, Martin and his accomplished team have built a flexible, all-in-one platform for field service professionals and operators.

He added: “BigChange’s technology is differentiated not only by its ability to serve commercial and residential clients of nearly any scale or vertical, but also by its award-winning product development and customer service capabilities.”