Family Fun Day to Mark Perth Firm, GS Group's, Milestone Birthday
A PERTH-BASED insurance company is marking its 30th anniversary with a family day for staff at the Crieff Hydro Hotel.
The pandemic put paid to plans for a charity fundraising dinner along the lines of the GS Group’s 25th birthday bash, which raised more than £20,000 for Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance based at Perth Airport and the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Glasgow.
But managing director George Stubbs, whose one-man band has grown into Scotland’s largest independent insurance broker employing 60 staff at offices around the country, was determined not to let the milestone pass unnoticed.
“Given all the uncertainty and the restrictions on indoor events I’m afraid another charity dinner with our clients just wasn’t feasible,” said Mr Stubbs, a long-time Perthshire Chamber of Commerce member.
“But these have been tough times for everyone and I wanted to recognise both the work of our staff and the support they have enjoyed from their families over the past 18 months.
“So we are having a family-orientated activities day and BBQ for more than 100 on Friday, August 13 in the grounds of the Crieff Hydro.
“It will be good to get everyone together in a safe environment to mark the anniversary.”
Perth has long played a key role in the insurance sector and the GS Group has succeeded another Perth-based firm, Clark Thomson, as Scotland’s biggest independent broker following their acquisition by a UK operation.
“That’s not something I ever targeted but it’s a huge source of pride to have grown over the years into the largest business of its kind in the country in just 30 years, with gross revenue of £25 million,” said Mr Stubbs.
“While we have offices in Glasgow, Dundee and Aberdeen, Perth is still very much the centre of our operations.
“It’s strange to look back and think it was just me and a coffee machine at the start, with second hand furniture acquired from the then General Accident, and a friend came in to help man the phones.
“Two years later the original office in Marshall Place was flooded and I remember looking out to see windsurfers going past.
“That provided me with personal experience of the need for any business or home to have proper insurance cover.”
The GS Group also has a financial services wing which has grown into one of Scotland’s leading independent financial advisors.
“In April when we went into lockdown, we feared we were facing Doomsday, with so many clients shutting-up shop. But thankfully the business has proved incredibly resilient,” said Mr Stubbs.
“People need insurance cover and we have the experience and skills set required for clients in a hardening market. We have even been helping other smaller independent operators place business
“Obviously some sectors, like leisure and hospitality, have been badly hit by the pandemic. But there have also been many success stories during these unprecedented times.
“It has been a time for businesses to stick together and help each other where possible.
“We have always looked to support organisations within the communities where we are based.
“With fundraising proving challenging for so many in the current climate, we have tried to help as much as possible by supporting small initiatives including local football teams and Perth’s Craigie Hill Golf Club with sponsorships.”
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