As part of our new It’s My Business feature for business owners and managers in the North East, we speak to Michael George, owner of specialist risk management company Millbank Soutions.
Millbank Solutions was launched just over a year ago following my retirement from the Police Service. As part of my former role I was heavily involved in the assessment and management of threat and risk mitigation at a high level. It therefore made sense to utilise these skills within the private sector and adapt them in order to best serve businesses, organisations and individuals.
Our aim is to protect assets and minimise risk to their safety and security whatever they are and wherever they may operate. Any company would wish to be able to operate freely in any environment and without fear of a security breach, or from an act of terrorism, a criminal act, or an insider threat. Once you are aware of the threat and risks within an environment either in the UK or overseas, you are then able to plan and prepare in order to minimise any disruption to business continuity. To that end, we provide risk management, security, investigative and intelligence services across numerous industries including engineering and manufacturing, legal, maritime, oil and gas, banking and education to name but a few.
How are you finding running your own business?
Millbank Solutions is my first venture into the business world and having come from a public sector background, the learning curve is very steep. However, I learn fast and I have some great people mentoring me, as well as new business friends and associates pointing me in the right direction. It is extremely rewarding to build a business which was a long time in the making, then deliver a service and get the great feedback we have had not only from clients, but from our peers also.
Before launching the business, you had a colourful career didn’t you?
I served for 10 years in the Armed Forces before enjoying a 23-year career with the Police Service. During this time, I worked on a number of high profile and complex investigations including murder enquiries and other serious crime. I then made the leap into the intelligence world where I worked to gain and process information from a number of sensitive areas. My last 15 years saw me working within the Counter Terrorism arena carrying out a similar role to that previously mentioned. I’m afraid I can’t go into details for obvious reasons, but it was a very satisfying role, despite it being unseen and thankless. I still train specialist police officers as an associate trainer / assessor at the College of Policing.
What are your plans for the future?
Our first year has been extremely busy. In 2019 we will be implementing plans to move into new premises and seek to increase permanent staff numbers. We will also be continuing to promote our services across the North East and highlighting the fact that we are based here; something I feel very strongly about. Therefore, there is no need to seek services such as ours from London which is traditionally where companies like ours exist. When I set up the company, I made a conscious decision to lay down the roots in our area. As the North East business community continues to grow and attract companies and investment, stakeholders need to understand what we offer and that we are here to support them.