Peak Scientific Instruments Ltd

Peak Scientific might be classed as a small business, but with offices on every continent and product distribution to 120 countries, its reach is truly global. Managing Director Robin MacGeachy explains why he strives for a good working environment.

Peak Scientific logo

What we do

Peak Scientific actually grew out of a cartoon that I drew back in 1992 of a laboratory technician with a gas cylinder over his shoulder. It read ‘say goodbye to cylinder gas’, and that is exactly what we’ve helped our customers to do.

In simple terms, we now provide boxes that produce gas on demand. Instead of having a cylinder of gas from BOC or Air Products, companies can plug one of our boxes into their electricity supply and it will produce the gas on site, usually in a clinical environment.

We’ve created a niche in the market and now have 17 offices across the globe, from São Paulo to Melbourne to Tokyo. Our presence in these locations helps us to both support our customers and distribute our product around the world. 

But while the majority of our business is export, which we’ve won four Queen’s Awards for, retaining our independence and manufacturing here in Scotland is a very important part of our long term plan. I’d like to show other businesses that you can build a strong export business from a small geographical location.

At our Glasgow headquarters we currently employ about 200 people, which I expect to grow in the first quarter of 2016. 

Working for Peak Scientific

Culture is a difficult thing to put your finger on, but visitors compliment us on our strong working environment and I’m very proud that we’ve been able to retain it as we’ve grown. 

There is definitely an atmosphere of togetherness; it’s not a corporate environment, it’s more about being valued, appreciated and looking after customers. We believe that if we pick the right people then we should be able to give them a high degree of freedom. 

Because experience in gas generation is unusual, our primary focus when hiring is on an individual’s character. As long as people have the basic skillset we can train them, but if they can’t fit in with the team it just won’t work.

At Peak Scientific there are real opportunities for career development, movement between job functions and even geographical locations. We strive to give everyone the opportunity to step up to the mark, so, wherever possible, we will promote from within. 

Working in Scotland

Our Glasgow site is only five minutes from the airport, which is very convenient for both travelling and receiving clients. But despite this proximity to the international airport, the business park that we’re on is actually a nice leafy, green area. It’s a very nice environment to work from.

Scotland itself is a fantastic place to live: we have the shortbread and the malt whisky that we’re known for, but also beautiful countryside and friendly, highly-skilled people.

Interview conducted in 2016