Page 1

Island usiness



Making contacts Isle of Wight Jobs

Getting connected Members meet Bob Seely MP

Milestone moment

Hillbans Pest Control

New chapter

Farewell to the Chamber’s Kevin Smith


Chamber member news, events and benefits




In this issue...

02 08


News Business news Events Chamber events

FOREWORD WELCOME TO JUNE’S EDITION OF ISLAND BUSINESS MAGAZINE. The Island is a great place to live and work. That’s our maxim at the Chamber as I’m sure you’ll know by now. The Island is also a small place with a great network of people. News travels fast here and businesses recommend each other. Chamber members will know the value of making great connections. A business that knows this very well is Isle of Wight Jobs. Reuben and Brett have been connecting Island businesses and employees from both sides of the Solent since 2013. We hear their story. We also hear from their Ryde neighbours Hillbans Pest Control, a long established name with a new, family team. They reflect on their recent growth and an award winning year.

Editor Tom Stroud

Elsewhere we have highlights from when Chamber members connected with the Island’s MP Bob Seely, at a recent member-only networking event. It was a wide ranging session that provides a great example of how the Chamber can offer high level representation to members and their businesses. Amidst all these connections and introductions we also stop to say farewell. Kevin Smith is retiring as the Chief Executive of the Isle of Wight Chamber. It’s a position he has held for 17 years and I’m sure you’ll join me in wishing him all the best in his new adventures. You can read Kevin’s reflections on his time at the top in this month’s Interview. Enjoy your magazine!


Advertising Tel. 01983 520777

10 14

Feature Bob Seely MP

Company Profile Hillbans Pest Control

18 24 26

Feature Isle of Wight Jobs

The Interview Kevin Smith New Members Welcome to the Chamber

Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce Mill Court, Furrlongs, Newport Isle of Wight, PO30 2AA

Printing & Design Crossprint Ltd

Island Business Magazine – Published by the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce While every care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of Island Business magazine the publishers do not accept any liability or provide any guarantee that the information is accurate, complete or up to date. The publisher and its employees and contractors have used their best efforts in preparing these pages and this publication but make no warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, with regard to the information supplied. The views of contributors do not necessarily represent those of the IW Chamber of Commerce. The IW Chamber of Commerce and its employees and contractors shall not be liable in the event of incidental or consequential damages in connection with, or arising out of, the providing of the information offered here. Island Business magazine is printed by Crossprint, an ISO 9001 registered printer based on the Isle of Wight. Contains material sourced from responsibly managed forests, certified in accordance with the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council).


JUNE 2018


Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce

Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce



New faces and new titles at Roach Pittis The team at Roach Pittis is growing in size and stature. Congratulations to Lee Peckham who now has Equity Partnership status in the firm. Lee joined Roach Pittis in in 2008 as a salaried Partner and his primary practice is based within the litigation department. Lee specialises particularly in land based disputes (including landlord and tenant) and debt recovery work, but he also deals with a considerable volume of transactional commercial lease work. Roach Pittis are determined to make sure they build for the future and continue to provide an excellent service for their

clients. They welcome Laura Brett to the team who joins from a mainland firm (although Island born and bred). Having been with them about 15 months now, she has shown great focus and drive with her ever increasing workload and so deserves her recent admission to Salaried Partner level. There’s also a very warm welcome to Michael Barratt, a commercial property solicitor who joins from another local firm. Michael brings with him enthusiasm, fresh ideas and a love of rugby! He will be a strong addition to the prominent commercial property department.

Pertemps Isle of Wight: a 20 year success story! Once upon time there was a man called Barry, his family lived on the beautiful Isle of Wight and he spent many a happy year holidaying there. During one of those holidays he noticed there was a need for a professional recruitment agency. Fortunately Barry worked for the largest independently owned Recruitment Agency in the country, Pertemps Recruitment, who agreed the Island would be the perfect location to open a new branch. With that, in 1998 he opened Pertemps Isle of Wight, in a one-room-only office above a transport company on the Dodnor Industrial Estate! Fast forward 20 years and Pertemps has become one of the largest and most successful agencies on the Island, placing hundreds of people in to work and covering a varied array of industries. The Island branch, whose staff are all born on the Island, has won multiple awards and as a company they have just been placed as the highest ranking recruiter in the UK to feature in The Sunday Times Top 100 Businesses To Work For.

But… the story doesn’t end there! Each year they go from strength to strength, offering a friendly yet professional service to clients both old and new.

WightFibre rewards committed staff WightFibre has launched a recognition of service programme to thank employees that have been with the company for five years or more. The new initiative is part of their ‘because we care’ ethos, designed to further expand the company’s existing rewards programme to specifically show appreciation to all of its employees who have demonstrated long-term commitment to their role. The move follows WightFibre’s recent accreditation award from The Institute of Customer Service. John Irvine, CEO at WightFibre, commented, “At WightFibre, we value loyalty, both from our customers and all our employees. This is a great way to say thank


you to all those that work for us that are so dedicated to serving our customers and the company, and this latest initiative works to congratulate and reward this long-term commitment and dedication.” The first of what will be regular celebrations rewarded fourteen WightFibre employees across five, ten and fifteen years of service milestones, with each receiving individual glass trophies presented by John Irvine, together with vouchers up to the value of £500 and up to an additional 3 days annual leave. Those recently gathered to receive their long-service awards having over 160 years of accumulated service to the company between them.



Wedding bells at Adgestone Vineyard It’s a milestone year for Adgestone Vineyard owner Russ Broughton. As well as the fiftieth anniversary of the vineyard he’s also celebrating the first wedding to be held on-site. There’s a twist too – the vineyard’s first happy couple is actually Russ and his wife Caroline, who were married in May. The premises are now licenced for weddings, with newly built shepherds hut bridal accommodation overlooking the sea. “This year has been amazing,” Russ says. “For Caroline and I to be able to get married in our

own garden is wonderful. Fifty years is also a big moment for the vineyard to celebrate and it’s the most exciting time since I bought the business in 2013. We had a record harvest in September with more than 16 tonnes of grapes picked, producing a phenomenal 22,000 bottles. We even had to go to Slovenia to get emergency tanks to store the grape juice. The bumper crop means we’re also able to sell to the trade, with hotels and restaurants now able to stock our wine. We have a lot to celebrate.”

Gangmasters licence for WP team Ahead of Brexit and the uncertainty over imposed restrictions on employment of EAA nationals in addition to the strength of the Sterling against the Euro, WP Recruitment & HR wanted to ensure that any effect was minimised to Island businesses, especially those within our thriving agriculture and food production industries. They applied to the Gangmasters Labour and Abuse Authority, a government department set up as a result of the Morecambe Bay tragedy in 2004, who regulate the supply of workers into roles within industries who could potentially be at risk of exploitation and whose remit is expanding to extend to the hospitality and construction sectors in addition to those previously mentioned. After an extensive investigation and thorough inspection, going beyond the requirements of the Employment Agencies Standards Inspectorate and Recruitment and Employment Confederation compliance, WP were granted a licence. Director, Kate Thomas said “The whole team are thrilled. We didn’t make any changes to our normal procedures, this just reiterates that we do our jobs properly and has given us the means to support further roles within local businesses and fulfil their requirements with local people who want to work”

Wight Computers helps businesses save time and money The Wight Computers team, led by managing director Andrew Nordbruch, is at the forefront of technology when coming up with innovative ideas to save Island businesses time and money. Amongst the wide range of computer services they have been providing for over 5 years they have a particular interest in identifying time intensive and laborious processes within a business to create effective, bespoke software solutions for customers who have been working with inherited paperbased systems to manage their operations. Companies like Blackhouse Quay Aggregates and Island Skip Hire have quickly seen an improvement in productivity, a reduction in JUNE 2018

financial loss and have gained valuable time to focus on business growth. Andrew says, “Taking time to understand our client’s needs helps us to develop unique solutions which not only move their business forward technically, but which also dovetail seamlessly with the rest of their operation.” He adds, “The companies we have worked with to date have all benefited from the simplicity of the systems and for some owners, it has actually given them their work/life balance back as they no longer spend so much time reconciling paperwork. Everything is now available at the touch of a button.”




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Flying start for Commanding View Aerial photography company Commanding View has had a great start to 2018. The Cowes based business specialises in drone photography and was founded last year. Peter, already a private pilot, had completed a post graduate diploma in 'Digital Innovation Leadership' sponsored by Vodafone. Peter has also recently joined the IW Chamber. “It’s been a brilliant start to the year,” Peter says. “Drone photography has many uses and we have recently been commissioned for weddings, yacht inspections and crew shots, roof inspections and school work. We offer timelapse photography as well as 360 Virtual Reality views. We’ve recently produced

360 VR footage of Medina Estuary as well as walkthroughs of schools and a sail loft. The latest commission has been to help marine engineers to analyse images of the Cowes Chain Ferry traversing the Medina from above. “Used properly, a drone can provide unprecedented photographic and video images from 1 ft to 400ft above ground level. Footage is already used to promote the Island’s beautiful coastline and natural beauty as never before. But it also has a place in recording events such as weddings, festivals and regattas as well as surveying land, property promotions, solar farms, agricultural land and domestic solar installations.”

Legal phone consultation service for business Island law firm Churchers Solicitors has launched a phone consultation service providing free advice and support for businesses. The service offers a convenient way for Island businesses to get help from lawyers based at the firm’s Ryde office. “Our phone consultations are really popular with the business community because they make it easy to get professional advice quickly just when they need it,” said Partner Andrew Bryan. “We already offer free initial consultations with our monthly drop-in sessions and face-to- face meetings by

appointment. The beauty of the phone consultation service is that we are making it even more convenient for business owners who struggle to find time in their busy day to attend appointments.” Phone consultations are easy to arrange via the website and a member of the law firm’s team will call back at the preferred time. Churchers Solicitors, which was named Isle of Wight Law Firm of the Year 2016, provides an expert resource for Isle of Wight businesses - from setting up or growing a business, to giving advice on debt recovery and employment law.

Pest control milestone for David Island based pest controller David French has been marking his 25th year in the business. David is the founder of 5 Star Pest Control and he started as a field technician in the 1990s. He became general manager, before forming 5 Star Pest Control in the spring of 2009 with his wife Lin. “I really don't know where the time has gone,” David says. “It has been a pleasure and a privilege to have served the people and business community on the Isle of Wight for the last 25 years. Highlights have obviously included working together with my wife Lin! Winning the Charles Keeble award in 2007, which is awarded annually to the top candidate on the gruelling

JUNE 2018

BPCA Diploma part 2 examination and is a well recognised award within the pest control industry. “During this time, we also became NPTA (National Pest Technicians Association) accredited and Basis Prompt registered. Although I have been training and qualifying pest control technicians for many years, our first fully trained and qualified field technician, Adam was joined this year by our new trainee Marc.” David, a keen Scuba diver and motorcyclist says, "We never stand still. We are constantly innovating. There is more to follow and exiting times are ahead!”



Island Ambassadors to drive investment and economic growth Peter Tomlinson, the Chamber’s Vice President explains.

The Isle of Wight Business Ambassador Scheme has been officially launched. More than 40 Island based business people have signed up to promote the Isle of Wight as a place to live and work, showcasing the benefits of the Island as a destination where businesses can relocate or start up. The ambassadors are volunteers and represent businesses that include exporters, manufacturers and transport operators. The launch event was held on Friday 4th May at the Royal Ocean Racing Club in Cowes. It was hosted by Kevin Smith, the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce’s Chief Executive who established the Business Ambassador Scheme. It’s part of the Chamber’s work to attract investment to the Island, adding value and investing in the future. The Chamber will be the key contact for prospective businesses looking to relocate and

the network of ambassadors will be able to provide real world support and insight. Mr John Owen CMG MBE DL is the Chair of the IW Business Ambassador Scheme. He commented: “Our business ambassadors have a wide reaching network of contacts on the mainland and overseas. They can speak from personal experience about their own company and their involvement in the Island. Many of the ambassadors have created their own businesses here on the Island and they know how the business environment here is a supportive one. Our ambassadors also show that the Isle of Wight is so much more than a holiday destination, representing a depth and breadth of business.” The Ambassador Scheme is linked closely to the Chamber’s recent published 2030 Vision, as

“The Island is a great place and the Ambassador network is one way in which we can market the Isle of Wight as a destination for business. We are very proud of the Island and what we are. We’re also recognising the areas where we need to improve. The 2030 Vision is a set of goals and ambitions and I’m very pleased that the administration at IW Council has adopted this as their own agenda. The Vision is no longer just the Chamber’s – it’s now a vision for the Isle of Wight – and that’s important to me because we’re all pulling in the same direction. The Vision gives us all a common language with which to discuss and to promote the Isle of Wight.”

Kevin Smith, the Chamber’s Chief Executive welcomed the launch of the scheme and used the opportunity to stress that this is the beginning of a new way of promoting the Island. “It’s time to be different and to talk about the great things about the Isle of Wight. The 2030 Vision is a collective aspiration and an ambition where everybody can play their part. The badge of the Isle of Wight Business Ambassadors is a brand that will raise the game for the Isle of Wight in business locations all over the globe.”

Isle of Wight Council leader Cllr Dave Stewart is an honorary Business Ambassador. He also spoke at the launch. “One of my ambitions is to really ‘pump’ the ambassador scheme over the next 12 months. I’m really comfortable with the Chamber’s 2030 Vision and I want to draw on the expertise of the Chamber and the Island’s business community to help us to move forward as a local authority. The Chamber has a key role to play and its Business Ambassadors have a strong international reach. I want us all to work together, productively and at pace.”

New Chief Executive for IW Chamber Kevin Smith is retiring as the Chief Executive of the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce. He will be succeeded by Steven Holbrook who will join the business on June 18th. Steven’s business background includes over 16 years’ experience working in the Middle East including 8 years as Chief Executive of a multi-million pound company where he gained


vast experience of business on a global scale, across a variety of business sectors. He has been responsible for putting together major multi-million pound deals with groups across the world. Kevin Smith is retiring after 17 years in the role. Read more about his time as Chief Executive in The Interview on page 10.



WightFibre Customer service - the lifeblood of any business Good customer service is the lifeblood of any business, yet when it comes to delivering great service, most claim it but few deliver. Cowes based WightFibre however is one company that places its commitment and rigour across all aspects of customer service at the very heart of operations. That’s reflected in their ‘because we care’ ethos and supported by the fact that 96% of its customers rate the service received as ‘Excellent’ or ‘Great’. WightFibre recently became the first company on the Island to become a member of The Institute of Customer Service and was also one of the first to receive the coveted Quality In Business (QIB) Award from the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce, bearing further testimony to their deep-rooted commitment.

“At WightFibre we work hard to provide an excellent service and to achieve exceptional levels of customer satisfaction – because we care. This is evidenced by our independent Trustpilot score of 9.5/10. But we are not resting on our laurels. Our customers are too important to us.” John Irvine, CEO at WightFibre Aside from being an established Island based independent telecoms company, with dedicated support centre plus installation and maintenance teams on the Island, the company’s telecoms network, cables and equipment are also owned and run by WightFibre from its base in Cowes. Other broadband providers such as BT, Plusnet, EE, TalkTalk and Sky simply use BT’s cables and

Simon Poole, WightFibre Operations Director receives The Institute of Customer Service Membership Plaque from Sue Hopson, ICS Client Relationship Director

equipment and badge it as their own, often delivering customer service through remote call centres. The result for WightFibre’s customers is that they are not reliant on the service delivered by BT’s Openreach division or the costs of using the BT network - giving WightFibre customers greater flexibility, highly competitive pricing and swifter direct response to their needs. It’s a refreshing alternative to big name providers which gives greater control to businesses, developers, homeowners and landlords. This can be highlighted further by comparing a BT score of just 0.4/10 and Sky 1.1/10 against WightFibre’s independent Trustpilot score of 9.5/10. “Our service really is second to none,” says Simon Poole, WightFibre Operations Director. “WightFibre not only want to outperform the rest of the telecoms industry but importantly want to be recognised as the benchmark for customer service across the Isle of Wight as a whole. Different organisations approach customer care in very different ways. At WightFibre, because we care, we have used our experience and focus on ‘the customer’ to ensure we have a

proven structure and framework for providing the best possible service at all times. Our service is consistent and based on best practice principles that will support our current and significant future growth in customer numbers as we roll-out Gigabit Island.” Over 50,000 homes and businesses across the Island, including areas not previously served by WightFibre will now benefit from £35 million investment in the company. A full-fibre, future proof, ultrafast broadband network will create the UK’s first ‘Gigabit Island’, backed by exceptional levels of customer care from an Island based company. With pilot areas already underway in Gurnard Pines and the Staplers area of Newport the full project will commence during the summer. “This new network will provide full-fibre broadband to homes and businesses using fibre optic cabling all the way from the exchange into a business or home,” explains John Irvine. “It will offer speeds of up to 1Gb (1,000Mb) or faster. It’s a significant step forward from the Island’s existing broadband infrastructure which uses fibre to the cabinet but then BT’s copper twisted pair from the cabinet to the home. It’s a great boost for Island business and the local economy.” If you are interested in receiving the new gigabit broadband services, you can register your interest at: or call WightFibre on 01983 241000 to speak to one of their dedicated customer service team.

JUNE 2018



Events Chamber

Thursday 28th June, 9.30am – 4.00pm

Free One-Day Business Start Up Course IW Chamber office, Mill Court Business Centre, Newport FREE to members and non members We offer new businesses the opportunity to take their ideas from paper into practice. Our free one day business seminar gives you the tools you need to take your idea from the drawing board to the real world. This course is designed for those with a business idea through to those who have been in business for six months.

Wednesday 4th July 2018, 4.00pm – 6.00pm

Lifeline Go Wimbledon Lifeline Alarm Systems, Riverway, Newport – FREE Lifeline Fire & Security are holding their now famous biannual open day event which has become an integral part of the local business community calendar. Join in the party this summer in celebrating another successful year of business. Enjoy refreshments and networking at the Lifeline Wimbledon themed event.

Wednesday 25th July 2018, 1.30pm – 3.30pm

Tax Break Opportunities Session IW Chamber Offices, Newport – FREE Brendan Treacy and David Thornton will also present a separate session in the afternoon covering Tax Break Opportunities For Established Businesses & Effective Customer Base Development.

Thursday 26th July, 9:30am - 4:00 pm

Free One-Day Business Start Up Course (for members and non members)

Meet the team, see the latest fire & security technology and network whilst enjoying a Hog Roast, Pimms and Strawberries & Cream.

Friday 3rd August 2018, 7.30am – 9.00am

Friday 6th July 2018, 7.30am – 9.00am

£9.00 per person

Business Networking Breakfast

Join us for a Business Networking Breakfast at Ventnor Botanic Gardens. Meet like-minded people and promote your products and services.

Quay Arts, Newport £7.00 per person Join Chamber members for top quality business-to-business networking in Newport. Meet like-minded business people and promote your products and services.

Wednesday 25th July 2018, 9.30am – 11.30am

Financing Business Start Up & How To Quickly Make An Impact To Generate Business Enquiries

Networking Breakfast - Ventnor Botanic Gardens

Monday 6th August, 12.00 until 3.00pm

IW Chamber Cowes Week Lunch Royal Ocean Racing Club, Cowes Parade Enjoy excellent quality networking over a two course lunch, in a prime position overlooking the racing on the Solent. It’s a perfect opportunity to socialise with your team or clients. RIB rides are also available for a closeup view of the regatta. For further details and to book your place see the Chamber website.

IW Chamber Offices, Newport – FREE There are three key ways to improve business profitability. Increase cashflow, control costs and increase turnover. With over 60 years top level business experience between them, seminar presenters Brendan Treacy (Finance Director) and David Thornton (Sales Director), have a wealth of ideas and details of emerging opportunities to share on these points. This session aims to help Business Start Ups and fledgling businesses to make the best start.


Find out more and reserve your place for any of your events at





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Isle of Wight Chamber members meet Bob Seely MP Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce members met with Bob Seely at a recent networking event held at Haven Hall in Shanklin. A tapas lunch was followed by a 90 minute question and answer session, exclusively for Chamber members, hosted by the Chamber’s Tom Stroud. The Chamber’s Vice President Peter Tomlinson also spoke about the recently launched 2030 Vision. Here’s a selection of what the Island’s MP had to say on a range of subjects. The importance of the Island’s business community You create wealth and you employ people and without you we'd be considerably poorer than we already are. We earn about 70 to 80 percent of the national average and probably 70 percent of the national southeast average, so the more we can do to create wealth, the better. The other reason I need you all is because you tend to be very smart because you're used to solving problems. You're used to delivering and therefore you're the doers in this society and I need you to work with me to present a united front so that we have a shared vision of where we take the Island in the next 10 and 20 years.

Politics locally and nationally Actually an MP doesn't have very much real


power. Most of the power to do stuff with government money on the Isle of Wight is via the council, so the council is more important than many of you think and in some ways the MP is actually less important. The MP is also a public figurehead. I have a lot of influence so if I start moaning at the council they think ‘we’d better do something’ because otherwise I have to start mounting public campaigns against them. As it is I get on very well with the council and it's important to work together. I am reasonably aggressive about this actually. I haven’t had to vote against the government but I've threatened to do so on quite a few occasions now. If I go to them and say ‘this is what the Isle of Wight thinks, the Chamber of Commerce is on board, the Isle of Wight Council is on board’ then there's no wiggle room for Whitehall.

Island Business editor Tom Stroud chairs the session with MP Bob Seely

Brexit Sorry. It's done. People just want to get on with things now and actually most voters are wondering why we haven’t left yet. Although I’m appalled by some of the opinions I hear I haven't actually spoken in the Brexit debate. Life’s too short. We're leaving, I want what we voted for, but for me the most important thing by far is the Isle of Wight.

Development plans for the River Medina The critical thing that I want to see is that shipbuilding continues on the Isle of Wight. Plans mustn’t put other people's profits before shipbuilding and jobs. That's been exactly the Isle of Wight’s problem for 50 years and it's very painful because if we get it wrong we're going to lose lots of jobs in Cowes and we're



"What we need on the Isle of Wight more than anything is a business and jobs agenda, not a housing agenda. For 50 years we've had the wrong housing agenda. We've exported our young and we've imported the old." Bob Seely MP going to kill off the Medina as a working river and I'm desperate to avoid it.

Tourism We have built an economy on bungalows and cheap tourism and we wonder why, in an era of increasing wealth, that hasn't worked. It's very obvious why. We need quality and not quantity and what we need to do is to improve our offer. We need to improve our visitor offer so it creates employment for our young people and creates greater wealth. We're not doing that. The traditional bucket and spade holiday is important and we shouldn't dismiss it - it's a really nice ethical lovely old-fashioned place to come on holiday and the Isle of Wight is always going to be a special place for people of limited means. We absolutely should welcome that but we also need to attract people who can happily spend a thousand or 1,500 pounds over a weekend. JUNE 2018

A fixed link It may be that we will get a fixed link in the next 10 to 20 years but in the meantime what I have to do as the public representative of this Island is argue for the best deal that I can get for the Isle of Wight and that is what I will do.

a housing agenda. For 50 years we've had the wrong housing agenda. We've exported our young and we've imported the old. Don't get me wrong – I love pensioners and I look forward to being one eventually but really we need to be building an island for our youngsters and not for people who retire here. We need a jobs agenda and we need to create jobs and we need to create wealth. The Isle of Wight should be Britain's version of California. Why on earth it isn't is beyond me. This should be the coolest place to be.

What have you learned in your first year in office? It's difficult to get change done but if you are persistent and you continue to make a fact-based case and you build alliances and coalitions you probably will be able to make a difference. I also need to learn how to relax.

If somebody wants to offer £3 billion for a fixed link let's have that debate but there is not a chance that we will get that money privately or publicly. At the moment the borrowing costs on two to three billion pounds a year will be upwards of £90 million. There's no way of the Island affording that privately and the money is not on offer from the national government so a fixed link is not feasible under the current system.

A jobs agenda What we need on the Isle of Wight more than anything is a business and jobs agenda, not

Bob Seely MP




The Importance of a Great Image By Martin Morris, IDML

‘You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure’ Zig Ziglar The human mind processes pictures more quickly than text. 90% of all information sent to the brain is visual. It’s why we see faces in complicated patterns and remember what we have seen far more quickly than what we’ve read. So from a business perspective, people will remember the image a company projects and draw conclusions from how it is presented. Organisation’s personnel represent a business or institution and are the first line of contact and the image of the standards and values the organisation represents. Will you be seen as a professional and competent organisation or business?

Providing a great look The first step in providing an image through uniform is linking branding with the presentation of apparel. This can be achieved by connecting your company colours and design into your clothing, the point is to make a striking uniform that’s easily identifiable and memorable.

Logo Logo is the first and most crucial branding for an organisation, it tells your customer and potential customers, who you are and what you do. How branding is presented can lend brand visibility or be eye catching on a collar or even classy in small detail on the back, on sleeves, or on accessories like hats and ties. The premiere branding for clothing is embroidery which adds class with its embossed finish, along with fantastic durability in wash and wear. Thermal printing (heat-seal) is a heat bonding adhesive plastic that lends it self to complicated, large and very sharp imagery. DTG (Direct to Garment) is ink based printing, the standard for T-shirts and general consumer clothing


Work-wear and uniform Clothing can be chosen for comfort, durability and job requirement, but the impact of the uniform with a connecting design idea is fundamental to an overall look. The secret to a good uniform is a strong colour theme, functionality and smart/ business/ working look with integrated logo positioning. A joined up theme to uniform indicates a knowledgeable and skilled business that radiates professionalism, which will impress both client and prospective client alike.

A focused approach and step-by-step guidance A step by step approach to producing work-wear, uniform or sports kit must begin with the logo, making it to exact specifications and to match a design theme. Choose carefully from a massive selection of products, brands and variations of design so that you can choose a specific and tailored look for your uniform. Find a supplier with the capabilities for short turn around times so clothing can be produced for specific requirements and for specific time deadlines. The key to assisting in producing a high quality image for any organisation is to listen to the customer’s requirements, understand the working conditions and to produce their image to the highest possible standard. High quality service, high quality products and working closely in the design process provide an instantly recognisable image with status, usability and the very picture of a ‘great image.’ IDML has more than 25 years’ experience in ‘making Island businesses look good at work’. IDML provides uniform, work wear and corporate wear to businesses, schools, clubs and societies. With an extensive product range and a selection of technical processes they work hard to reflect customer brands, businesses and organisations at their very best. THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR THE ISLE OF WIGHT


Brochures, Books & Leaflets

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We can design and produce boxes, labels and sleeves specifically suited to your products. We also produce short run cupcake boxes – perfect for weddings, events and functions.


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It’s not just about business! Our friendly team are here to help with those special occasions too.


& Wedding Stationery + Personalisation service

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C t s e P s n a b l l i H OFILE: R P Y N A COMP

at a school and joined the Hillbans team for a year prior to us officially taking over.”

A major milestone for a new team: Hillbans Pest Control celebrates its thirtieth anniversary It’s been a year to remember for the team at Hillbans Pest Control. Husband and wife Patrick and Sandra Knowles took over the business in October 2016 as joint managing directors, firmly turning it into an Isle of Wight family business. Their investment has already been rewarded with a growing list of clients, industry accreditations and Isle of Wight business awards. “Everyone knows the Hillbans name but it’s been a new start for us,” Sandra explains. “Hillbans was founded in 1988 as a dampproofing business which grew to include pest control services and became two separate companies. When the owner Trevor Thorne retired he was looking for a buyer for the business. My husband Patrick had worked in pest control for 12 years and after a lot of thought we decided to go for it. I left my job


It’s definitely a family business. Sandra’s niece Kym is the office manager and Sandra’s brother Mark is one of the technicians who works on the road as a pest controller. Alex is a trainee, through HTP Apprenticeship College, and he’s also Patrick’s cousin’s son. Sandra’s sister Tracey also helps out at times. “It’s a great team,” Sandra says. “We're family but everyone knows what they've got to do. We’re all on the road and in different places so we're not on top of each other every day of the week. We're not afraid to say if something needs doing or if something needs rectifying. We've never once had a cross word which is great.”

we're really eliminating any issues before they become problems. Pest control is also a major part of scoring for restaurants and the catering sector so we’re doing an important job. We have literally saved the day on some occasions, whether that was removing a large wasps nest that was holding up shooting for a cinema film, or dealing with a vicar who had a pigeon that was threatening to spoil a christening.

“It’s never boring because every season has an issue! In the winter it’s rats and mice and then moles. In the warmer months it’s wasps and ants as well as nesting birds. Every season has a different bug too, including fleas in the summer and again when people turn their heating on. ‘Flying ant day’ is probably the busiest day of the year although that’s mostly about reassuring people that things will settle down in 24 hours. There's never a quiet time.”

The team are now based on Ryde’s Nicholson Road Business Park where they relocated at the beginning of the year. The majority of their clients are businesses with domestic customers making up around a third of their work. The client list is wide ranging and includes Island schools, estate agents, hotels, restaurants and historic properties. Ally Loake has also joined the team as their newly appointed office administrator. “We've won some really big contracts in the last year,” Sandra says. “Every business has pest control issues and we're here to help sort them out. We are discreet. Keeping one mouse down keeps ten mice from appearing so THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR THE ISLE OF WIGHT


l o r t n o C The team are committed to using preventative methods rather than reactive ones whilst ensuring that they remain environmentally friendly. With Sandra and Kim they also have two female qualified pest controllers which is rare in the industry and unique on the Island.

“We can go to places where a female is preferred, including sites like care homes and some of the schools. People with dementia often feel happier with female technicians coming in,” Sandra says. The business has grown quickly since 2016 and the team has had to adapt to that growth. Patrick and Sandra have brought in new structures and new ways of engaging with staff and customers. “When we took the business over there was a lot of change. One of the first things we did was to bring in Kim as an office manager. We updated the website and we joined Twitter and Facebook. We needed to be engaging with people using new media. We give lots of free advice too, over the phone or in our on-line blogs.”

troud by Tom S

Sandra and the team have also been recognised by their peers. In December Hillbans Pest Control were named Growth Business of the Year at the Chamber’s annual Business Awards For Excellence. On the night they also collected a Highly Commended in the Small Business of the Year category. “It's been a great year,” Sandra says. “After winning that award I had a secret sob! It was like someone patting you on the back, telling us that we’ve done really well, rewarding our vision and our passion. I’m still ambitious though and to win another award would be absolutely amazing. “We do have passion and we knew where we wanted to go. People often ask what we want to do next and I'm not looking at expanding to the mainland. I want to continue to grow the business by offering all of our customers a hundred-percent service and making sure that we're doing our best on the Isle of Wight.”

“It's been a great year. After winning that award I had a secret sob! It was like someone patting you on the back, telling us that we’ve done really well, rewarding our vision and our passion." Sandra Knowles Hillbans Pest Control

Hillbans is the only pest control company to hold the Chamber’s Quality In Business accreditation. They’re members of the British Pest Control Association and the team has recently been awarded with CEPA European Quality Standard Certification for pest management services EN16636 “We're up there with the big companies nationally with this award which we worked really hard for at the beginning of this year.” JUNE 2018



From left: Mike Parsons, Jonathan Thornton and Sean Colson

Business Networking

Landmark event for PC Consultants PC Consultants celebrated 25 years in business by welcoming friends and clients to a reception at the prestigious Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes. It’s a landmark moment for the Ryde based business, founded in 1993 by Sean Colson and Mike Parsons. PC Consultants managing director Jonathan Thornton welcomed more than 100 guests with a presentation that revisited the company’s first quarter century.


“25 years is a really important milestone for us and we’re all very proud,” Jonathan said. “Many of our customers have been with us since the very beginning. The IT industry is constantly evolving and we’ve always embraced new technology. We’ve grown significantly during our journey, now employing more than 20 staff and with double digit growth year-on-year. Our core business is still here on the Island and we all live and work here. It’s great to be able to celebrate that success here today.”





JUNE 2018









Isle of Wight Jobs by Tom Stroud “Changing the way the Island works” since 2013 Five years ago Reuben Loake changed his job. He’d previously worked for other people, helping candidates find work and employers find staff. By re launching Isle of Wight Jobs he became his own boss and started to change the way that other people worked too. “We’ve revolutionized jobhunting,” Reuben says. “By going digital we’ve streamlined the way people look for work and we’ve streamlined the way employers look for work too.” Reuben is managing director at Isle of Wight Jobs. He and his team have been at their office on Nicholson Business Park in Ryde for four years and he now has five members of staff. The business was founded in 2009 by Brett White, who runs the successful design studio Peekaboo and is now Reuben’s business partner. Brett had registered the domain name back in 2006 and had spent three years building the website. “It was funny,” Reuben says. “Brett said to me ‘I've built and designed this jobs board, sure we don’t have many jobs or candidates yet but it’s like nothing that’s ever been done before on the Island, and I’ve always believed it's a fantastic idea, what do you think?’. I decided that the website was a solution. It could save people time and money as well as showing just how much employment is actually out there.”


Reuben’s decision was based on his previous experiences with employers and candidates, which often took up a lot of time and energy. Reuben had worked in IT at Liz Earle for many years; then he worked for a charity helping long term unemployed people back to work, something he really enjoyed. “Whenever we took on a member of staff we'd speak to the HR team and they'd be inundated with applications to an inbox and the phones would keep ringing, taking up all of their time. Working for a local charity was the real eye-opener for me. I suddenly noticed that the only way to look for work was the local newspaper. It came out on a Friday leading to a mad scramble every week to find a new job. “For a small to medium business it's all about resources and saving time and money. I wanted to find a way of making the creative process fluid. We could put new jobs up any day, any time and it would be intuitive. Applications would come through the website rather than to an inbox and it would free up people's time and it would save them money.” Reuben took on the business in May 2013. His first challenge was to persuade new clients that a new, digital approach was the way forward. “It was my biggest challenge and people were very sceptical

because they'd used the same methods of looking for work for the last 100 years. I’d say ‘It’s free - will you support me - I may come to you for feedback and ways to make it better and in return I'll do your jobs for free’. After about six months I was able to go to some of my clients to say ‘would you be willing to pay next time’ and every single one of those clients is still with us now.” In 2018 the numbers are impressive. Isle of Wight Jobs has 850 active employers with 28,000 registered candidates, receiving up to 3,500 job searches each day. Reuben’s also active on social media and wants to use his business to make a statement about what the Isle of Wight can offer. “The difference now is that it's all about skilled quality jobs, rather than ‘there aren’t any jobs’. Employers have a responsibility to upskill and invest in their staff, especially young people. Candidates also have a responsibility to get out there and find these opportunities. Employers are looking for skilled, passionate people. They will take them on and give them an opportunity. As older people start to retire employers are looking for new opportunities for young people to come in and fill those roles. I think the job market is changing generationally and there's a lot more fluidity at the younger end.”

From left: Brett White Reuben Loake

Reuben and Brett’s newest venture is Hyphen Recruit, a recruitment business designed to help clients on the south coast and in London, run by Libby Endean who joins the company with many years of experience in the employment sector. “Hyphen Recruit works in two ways. Yes we're filling roles on the mainland but most importantly we're bringing people from the mainland to work here. Isle of Wight Jobs is proud to be a local business but we also want to make sure that we have the ability to reach the mainland. The growth potential for us over there is fantastic and the future is going to be really bright. “We definitely attract people from other parts of the UK by highlighting the fantastic



lifestyle that is on offer here. We work very hard to bring skilled staff such as rosette starred chefs and engineers over to the Island. We do a relocation package and we'll show them our schools, introduce them to estate agents and we give them a

tour. We really ‘sell’ the Isle of Wight because the more skilled people come here, the more companies will grow. As they grow they can take on more people and this circle of training and upskilling will continue. Unless we attract skilled people to fill those jobs,

local companies can't grow. That’s why it’s so important to be positive about the Island and we mustn’t ever talk it down. Reuben’s excited about the future but he’s also keen to mark a milestone for his

“For a small to medium business it's all about resources and saving time and money. I wanted to find a way of making the creative process fluid. We could put new jobs up any day, any time and it would be intuitive.” Reuben Loake JUNE 2018

business. Five years provides a moment to reflect on what he and his team have achieved so far. “I'm immensely proud that people see us as a trusted hub where they can look for work and find opportunities. When I started in 2013 I kept hearing people say that there weren’t any jobs on the Island. I think we’ve proved there are lots of jobs. It’s not about who you know any more. Also it’s so much easier to advertise a position. I’m proud to be able to promote a real breadth of quality jobs and businesses large and small all over the Island. It used to be our reasonably arrogant catchphrase but I do think we have changed the way the Island works.”



New look for WightlinkTV As the saying goes, “A change is as good as a rest!� In Spring 2018, Bob Ede TV won the contract to manage Wightlink's digital advertising platform, formerly known as OnboardTV. Now rebranded WightlinkTV, there are exciting changes afoot. Perhaps the most significant will be our ability to remotely update content quickly and easily using internet connected media players. These players can also display 'real-time' data such as news, weather, road and rail information tailored to each route or shore-based location. The Portsmouth/Ryde Fast Cats have now been fitted with these new players. As well as 30 or 60 second adverts, we can now offer 'Flash Ads' on this route. 'Flash Ads' are short adverts of 5 or 10 seconds, typically repeated up to six times a crossing over 1 to 5 days. 'Flash Ads' are ideal for promoting special offers or events. They can be displayed at pre-set times then removed instantly an offer or event has passed.

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Notes To Self Tim Sell Crossprint’s Managing Director Tim Sell was born in 1956. He went to school in south east London. He worked in oil, then printing, buying his own business and then moving to the Island in 2003 to run Crossprint. In 1973 he qualified as a glider pilot whilst in the Air Training Corps. He was also a special constable between 1983 and 1987. He was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1994. Interview by Tom Stroud.

What were you like as a child? I was adopted and there's something about adopted children. They wish to achieve and it makes them stronger people. It was certainly true in my case. I've always been determined, due to the fact I was given away at birth. I found out who my birth mother was 25 years ago and then ten months ago I discovered who my birth father was. I've got another sister that I didn't know I had. Reg and Jean Sell adopted me and to me they are my parents and they guided me to be the person I am today. I didn't do very well at school and I was asked to leave because I found it more interesting to go to work at my uncle's butcher shop at a very young age. The headmaster didn't know quite what to do with me so he sent me over to the Technical College in the fourth year and I learned bricklaying and painting and decorating. Mr Schofield said to my parents ‘I know there's a brain in there somewhere but I can't find it.’ In 1971 I started the college apprenticeship in engineering and I was there until the end of 76. I'd gone from being a child that was a non-achiever to getting the qualifications and passing with merits and distinctions within the first year.

What was your first job? How did you get into the print industry? I went from college to the oil platforms on the North Sea where I would be climbing cranes, standing on cables a thousand feet above sea level, wobbling around. Today I can't even stand on a chair! It was great fun. I earnt a lot of money and I bought my first Jaguar for cash. I had an accident out there on the platforms and broke my cartilages in my knees. On my crutches I went for a job as a sales rep at AH Butler, a small printer. Within a year of working with that company I was made a director and when I met my now wife Sue in 1985 we bought the company. We took it from being a £50,000 a year company to £1.2 million in eight years. So that was quite an achievement. In 1999 I decided to join a company up in London and that got me in contact with Crossprint and the Isle of Wight. I met with Tony the managing director and in 2003 I put in a proposal, which the board accepted, and I took over the development of Crossprint.


How has living with MS affected you? It was a real shock when it hit. I was in Rome, my second home and favourite city in the world, when I lost feeling in 80% of my body in one day. Once it was diagnosed I read a lot of books and I cut out dairy products. I lost a huge amount of weight and my numbness reversed very quickly to around 8% where it is today. It’s like I'm on fire all the time. It burns, it's horrible and it's there from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep. It was a big wake up call and I think it made me more selfish because basically I have to look after myself. I used to perhaps worry too much about other people who didn't really worry about me.

What advice would you give that younger version of yourself? You must never take no for an answer. If you try something that doesn't work, don't go back to it, just find something else to move on to. For every hundred ideas you have, only one will succeed. Be prepared to fail, don’t worry about it, move on. Keep changing. You’ve got to reinvent things. THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR THE ISLE OF WIGHT


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I am most proud of being given the opportunity to be able to work for the good of the Isle of Wight and its business and wider community. This has been a great motivator to work to help the Island grow and develop in whatever way I could. Kevin Smith Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce

The Interview

by Tom Stroud

Kevin Smith

Chief Executive of the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce Kevin Smith was appointed the Chamber’s Chief Executive in 2001. He is retiring this month and will be succeeded in the role by Steven Holbrook who joins the Chamber in the middle of June. To mark Kevin’s retirement he talks to Tom Stroud about his time in office.




How does that feel to be leaving the Chamber after such a long time? Wow, where did that time go? It only seems a short while when I moved into the role of Chief Executive for the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce. I took on the responsibility for a small organisation with a wage liability of around £250,000 per year and a reserve of £30k. My initial thoughts were ‘This should be fun and will certainly test my business skills’.

How do you look back on your time as CEO? What are you most proud of? I am most proud of being given the opportunity to be able to work for the good of the Isle of Wight and its business and wider community. This has been a great motivator to work to help the Island grow and develop in whatever way I could. Running the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce has been a privilege. The organisation has a long pedigree in working towards assisting the Isle of Wight, stretching back over 100 years. I used to work for a large corporate and working to increase shareholder value is certainly not as rewarding as working to improve the wellbeing of our great Island community. Specific things that I am proud of include developing and managing the Isle of Wight Lottery which has created and provided support for over a thousand Isle of Wight jobs. I created and set up ‘Young Chamber’ as a concept and brand, which attracted national and international interest and all started here on the Isle of Wight. Along with my wife we founded the idea of Chamber Health, another unique initiative which does not exist anywhere else in the country but has supported the health and wellbeing of thousands of Isle of Wight employees. I’m proud that that the Chamber galvanised the tourism industry, bringing it together to enable better promotion of the Isle of Wight as a great place to visit. The Chamber along with the IW Council subsequently then helped set up the tourism destination organisation Visit Isle of Wight. More recently I am proud of helping to establish the recently launched Isle of Wight 2030 Vision. This piece of work has involved the input of many Isle of Wight businesses and provides a framework for us all to work towards, making the Isle of Wight an even better place in which to do business. The 2030 Vision has also enabled the Chamber to set up the Isle of Wight Business Ambassador Scheme which uses the extensive contacts of business people who travel all over the world representing and promoting the Isle of Wight. I think this is all good stuff and I am proud to have helped set this up and make it happen.

businesses have grown. The challenge for businesses now is to continue to manage this and the potential impact of Brexit on the economy. The message is still the same - stay focused, manage costs and increase revenue, part which of course includes providing excellent customer service. As a part of the Chamber’s role we have established the business improvement tool of ‘Quality in Business’ as well as setting up the IW Chamber Mini MBA, helping to develop managers and staff. Both initiatives have been designed to assist Island businesses to grow and develop and I believe are very useful tools for businesses especially in uncertain times.

What did you learn in your time in office – about business, the Island and yourself? I learnt that businesses can be incredibly resilient. The Isle of Wight is truly a fabulous place to raise a family and my kids really did have the ‘Swallows and Amazons’ experience. I have learnt that humility and integrity are important elements in creating meaningful partnerships that can make really beneficial things happen for the Isle of Wight.

How do you see the Chamber’s role in 2018 and beyond? The Chamber has an increasingly important role to promote and protect the views of the Island’s business community. Island businesses invest their own money into their enterprises, employing most of the Island’s workforce and are very important for the ongoing wealth of the Isle of Wight. They must be encouraged, nurtured and supported to grow, creating more wealth and more jobs, especially for the Isle of Wight’s young people. I believe that the Isle of Wight Chamber has a huge role to make sure that this happens.

What advice would you give Steven Holbrook about being the Chamber’s next CEO? Enjoy yourself and have fun.

How has the Island’s economy changed in your time as Chief Executive? The major change has come from the banking crisis in 2008. I do not think that anyone believed that the impact of this would last so long. At the time I can remember conversations at the IW Chamber about getting through this period and most of us thinking that we were talking about possibly a three-year journey. So, after 10 years of austerity and ever present public-sector cuts it is good to see that many Island businesses have weathered this storm and that many JUNE 2018

Kevin Smith (2006)



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Talking Business By Peter Tomlinson Vice President of the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce

This month we say farewell to the Chamber’s Chief Executive Kevin Smith. Seventeen years is a long time and he will be a tough act to follow. Kevin's biggest contribution to the Chamber has been his innovation. The number of new initiatives that he's come up with really is unparalleled in any other chamber across the country. It’s a very impressive list that includes things like Young Chamber, the Isle of Wight Lottery, Chamber Health, the new mentoring programme and the Business Ambassadors. These are things that aren’t unique – because they’ve been copied elsewhere in some cases – but they started here and they started because Kevin came up with the ideas and championed them. One of the things that people don't understand is quite how much the Chamber has done under Kevin's tenure. Coming up with these interesting and innovative ideas has made the Isle of Wight Chamber very forward-thinking. These are the things where I think we really need to take our hats off to Kevin. There are plenty of people that could have been a safe pair of hands, with a steady-as-you-go management style

but Kevin's really been a trailblazer and has done great things in his time. Personally I’m sorry that I won't have the pleasure of actually being a President with Kevin as the Chief Executive. I think that would have been a lot of fun. Having said that I actually think we'll have a lot of fun with Steven Holbrook who takes up the role in the middle of June. Steven won’t be “Kevin mark two” but we have somebody with a wide variety of skills and experience and an energy that I think is equal to Kevin’s. I am also really looking forward to keeping the momentum, keeping the initiatives and moving the Chamber forward. We have a lot of exciting ideas to make sure that the Chamber is really relevant to Island businesses of all sizes. We want to develop that relationship with all of our members so that they are aware of what we can do for them and with them. It’s also about what we can do on behalf of our members. We are a very active chamber in terms of lobbying and presenting the Island’s position. The work that's been done on the 2030 Vision is about setting the scene for what we all should be doing in order to have a vibrant economy here. That

is being very well accepted and supported by the council and the MP. The 2030 Vision is a wonderful thing to have, to ensure that everybody on the Island is pulling in the same direction. Getting a document that is broadly accepted is a very proud legacy for Kevin and I know we will rely heavily on that document going forward. However at this stage it is still a document. Now what we need to do is start getting actions that feed into it so that it isn't a list of hopes, it's a list of projects and actions that will lead to improving the Island's economy.


Every month Island Business magazine spotlights the people and companies that are making the news on the Isle of Wight. If you’ve got a story to share with the Island’s business community, start with Island Business. Every edition is emailed directly to thousands of Island business people and the physical edition is racked across the Island at high footfall locations. It’s also directly mailed to all Chamber members. If your business is growing, investing, celebrating, winning awards, appointing new staff or marking a milestone then get in touch. Send your news stories to the editor, Find out more about advertising, sponsorship opportunities and how we can help you to raise your profile by emailing




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Island Business June 2018  

IW Chamber members meet the Island's MP Bob Seely; we profile Isle of Wight Jobs and Hillbans Pest Control; we say farewell to the Chamber's...

Island Business June 2018  

IW Chamber members meet the Island's MP Bob Seely; we profile Isle of Wight Jobs and Hillbans Pest Control; we say farewell to the Chamber's...