Prodem Fire & Safety

Origins

After many years of management experience with a major company in the industry, followed by a short abortive spell with partners, the current Chairman, Dennis Benson, decided that the very long working hours involved could be better utilised by setting up a family business. The name "Prodem" was made up from the family initials – Pat, Robert, Dennis and Mike, and it was decided that only family would have control. Early challenges included Dennis having a heart attack after only four months of trading, mike and rob being teenagers whilst running a business from home, and very limited availability of finance.

Success Factor

The promotion of Mike Benson to Managing Director with responsibility for the future growth of the family business has led to the current growth rate. In addition, concentration on customer service which has lead to the company acquiring an excellent reputation throughout South Wales which, in turn, has lead to large contracts being won. Finally, maintenance staff are not paid on a commission basis and a very good basic package is paid instead. This has led to increased staff loyalty and they are able to concentrate on carrying out a job in accordance with British Standards rather than trying to increase the amount of commission they are paid.

The Future

Prodem aims to diversify into other products and services which compliment its core business, whilst working with manufacturers and suppliers to make sure that staff have the knowledge and training to help customers meet their requirements with regard to fire, health, safety and environmental legislation. Increasing the training of sales and maintenance staff on new products, services and legislation will enable Prodem to offer a complete package using the expertise within the company. Finally, the business will keep up to date with, and maintain, quality to the high standards of ISO 9001 and seek to gain approvals to British Approvals for Fire Equipment (BAFE).