Founded in 1978, MCR Systems now have a national clientele with an impressive portfolio. Truly leading in business software solutions, the Symphony suite has grown from strength to strength. Managing Director Matthew Gatter discusses his personal journey at MCR and the highlights so far.
Q: How and When Was MCR Systems Founded?
MG: MCR Systems Ltd (formerly Midland Cash Registers Ltd) was founded in 1978 by Richard Ashdown, Bryn Miller and Tony Gatter, all three had industry experience working for National Cash Registers and saw an opportunity to start their own business at a time when the industry was evolving. They subsequently formed a buying consortium with other cash register businesses and imported electronic cash registers from Japan, focusing on selling to customers within the East Midlands primarily.
Within a year of opening their Leicester branch, a second branch was opened in Nottingham. As we moved into 1980's, MCR became resellers for companies such as Casio, Sharp and Uniwell and towards the end of that decade going into the nineties we set-up an EPOS division, still as a reseller. I personally joined the company in 1985, having previously worked for a couple of years at Barclays Bank. After a Management buyout in 2004, we made the decision to start developing our own software, as opposed to acting as a reseller. Soon after we appointed a Development Manager (Ben Hancy) with a vision to design and build Symphony.
Q: Why Was The Symphony Product Created?
MG: The landscape had changed and we were now operating on a national basis. MCR had achieved success as a reseller of software but we now wanted our own identity and wanted to have the ability to shape a product and be able to add functionality and react to customer requests. We also made the decision to move away from pre-installed, pre-licenced software to a web-hosted Software as a Service model and were amongst the first in the UK to do so in our industry. We made the decision to design Symphony as a scalable solution that could meet the requirements of large corporate organisations and SME's which we felt would strengthen our position in the market and introduce new opportunities to the business.
Q: Why Do Your Customers Select You Over Your Competitors?
MG: We have a proven track record, and the strongest EPOS Enterprise Management software solution on the market, along with our own fully integrated suite of software modules all from the MCR stable.
Q:From Your Personal Perspective, What Is Your Greatest Achievement At MCR?
MG: Making the decision to develop our own suite of software back in 2004 which required significant investment and having the insight to be pioneers of the SaaS model within our industry. I am also very proud of the staff that we employ, a couple have been here even longer than me, believe it or not! They are a dedicated and loyal team and of course, are the biggest asset of this business, without question. We work with some wonderful clients and have our systems installed at some of the most prestigious and famous venues in the world such as Wimbledon and 10 Downing Street, as well as being the system of choice for Colleges and Universities across the UK, and many leading Hospitality clients.
Q: What Is Your Management Style?
MG: I would like to think I am approachable and I treat people with respect. I would never ask someone to do something that I would not be prepared to do myself. I like to lead by example and surround myself with good people, try to understand their strengths and weaknesses and how to get the best out of them. It's important that staff feel valued and that they have a voice and input into the business. We currently have 55 employees but we expect that number to be around 60 by the end of the year.
Q: Any Special Thanks Or Mentions You Would Like To Give?
MG: Yes, to all the staff who have been with me throughout the journey for their tireless effort and dedication. We truly have a great company and a great team! I look forward to the future, which is looking bright for MCR Systems.