A family who must know everything there is to know about fire extinguishers and alarms are preparing to celebrate a business anniversary.
Today marked an important milestone for Bury St Edmunds-based Saxon Fire – 25 years since Iain Grimmer first launched it.
Iain, of Great Whelnetham, decided to take the leap to become self employed after getting increasingly frustrated with his previous long-term sales job.
He said: “I worked for Chubb for 10 years, then the recession kicked in and I was being sent places where I had no history, which made sales difficult.
“They kept switching my areas around and, you’ve got no history there so you’re going in totally stone cold, so I decided to start my own company up.
“The catalyst for the whole thing was I said ‘how low can I go?’. Obviously there’s a trade price list and I thought ‘I can knock 30 per cent of this and make a good business out of it’.”
Now with the help of his two sons, Neil and Stuart, who are company directors, Iain has managed to upgrade the Vauxhall Cavalier he started out with to a VW Transporter van and increase his customer base almost threefold from the 500 he built up in his first year.
“You don’t just have customers once when you go in with a service contract – I’ve got customers I’ve been doing for 25 years,” said Iain. “People become more friends than customers really.”
Saxon Fire, based on the Eastern Way Industrial Estate, installs and maintains fire alarms and sells, services and offers fire extinguisher training throughout East Anglia and North London. Call 01284 704400 for more.