Edinburgh fempreneur sets out to make a splash with Cyrus

An Edinburgh start-up is set to make a splash in the Scottish recruitment industry by becoming the first service of its kind exclusively dedicated to the country’s niche and largely public-funded water and energy markets.
The recruitment spin-out – otherwise dubbed ‘Cyrus’ – is the latest brand to be incubated at professional services recruitment specialist Edgar Stewart’s start-up hub in Stockbridge and is being rolled out by fempreneur Sara Zorriasatein, who is investing £20k of her own money in the new venture.
Edgar Stewart, which has already backed two niche recruitment start-ups this year in the SME and start-up and food and drink sectors, has pledged to match Sara’s equity and therefore double the investment, taking the total capital to £40,000.
The new offering has been six months in the making – with 37-year-old Sara taking up residency at Edgar Stewart’s business incubator and start-up hub in Edinburgh, where she has benefited from support and a financial remuneration package while she developed her new enterprise.
Sara has worked in recruitment for more than 13 years and set up Search Consultancy’s Energy Division and grew the team, which she later led to diversify into renewables, petrochemicals, nuclear and oil and gas before deciding to set up on her own.
Prior to that, Sara, who was born and brought up in Edinburgh by her Persian father, spent more than seven years at Hays – initially starting out as a recruiter for the property and construction market before moving on to water and utilities recruitment. Hays later diversified, setting up an energy division.
In 2009, Sara headed up a number of the division’s accounts, focussing on external suppliers to Scottish Water. One of her key projects included recruiting for Dalkia (which has since rebranded to Veolia) at Cameron Distillery after the firm commissioned a new biomass plant to be based on-site to help create energy from waste.
Although other recruitment firms have since also expanded to accommodate water and energy divisions, Sara’s will be the first to focus solely on this sector.
Her new branding for Cyrus has been inspired by her Middle Eastern roots – with its purple and gold logo synonymous with success and winning and the crescent moon harking back to Persian mythology.
Sara, who is the first female to embark on such a project, said: “I’m delighted to introduce Cyrus – a new, dedicated recruitment service for the Scottish water and energy markets.
“Not only is it the first of its kind in Scotland, but it goes against the grain of run-of-of-the-mill recruitment consultancy.
“Cyrus is about stripping it all back and providing a good, honest and personable service. You could say that while we’re innovating, we’re also going back to basics – much like the clients we hope to serve.
“We want to place good quality candidates in good quality roles. Simple.”
Bruce Hydes, founding director at Edgar Stewart, which has pledged to invest £120k in Scottish recruitment start-ups this year, said: “It goes without saying that we’re extremely proud to have helped incubate and nurture Sara’s new venture to this point.
“But this is only the beginning and we look forward to supporting Cyrus long-term as Sara gains a stronger foothold in the Scottish market.
“Naturally, we wish her all the best and will continue to be on-hand to offer our expertise as well as investment.”

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