At the age of 57, with the successful running of two multi-million-pound electrical firms under their belt, most people would be starting to daydream about taking it a little easy.
Not Kevin Bristow, Foley Electrical’s new General Manager.
He has just joined the rapidly-growing East Yorkshire firm to help drive it to similar success.
Kevin is hoping to bring some of his extensive experience and skill to bear in helping our Co-Directors James and mum Sally to carry the company to the next level.
At the tender age of just 25, James has a great deal to be proud of already. Having passed his electrical apprenticeship with flying colours, he established the business in 2014 and now employs seven people, serving a client base ranging from private domestic clients through to major petroleum companies, property developers and farmers.
However, with one eye always on the horizon, James is constantly looking to ensure Hutton Cranswick-based Foley Electrical keeps pace with the highest standards and exciting new innovations within the industry.
He said: “I’m absolutely delighted to welcome Kevin on-board, as his injection of wider experience will help me get the company where I want it to be in double-quick time.”
And where he wants it to be, is serving a much bigger, more diverse client base, throughout the region and beyond.
Kevin’s first role was with the former Hull-based electricians firm Beaumont Electrical, owned by his father and brother-in-law. He worked his way up from apprentice to technical manager over a period of 22 years. In that time, the company grew from 10 to 140 people, with five offices in London, Hull and Manchester, and supporting major names like the Macdonalds chain of restaurants.
In 2008, Kevin’s brother-in-law sold Beaumont Electrical to Faceo, a French owned company Facilities Management Company which was attracted by its solid national base of skilled engineers.
Kevin took on the role of Technical Manager for the merged company, which went on to do everything from testing work for insurers like Royal Sun Alliance, to Ministry of Defence installations and reactive work.
After that, he was offered the opportunity to buy into his own business, taking on KRG Mechanical and Electrical Services seven years ago when it had five engineers on board and a turnover of less than a quarter-of-a-million-pounds, and transforming it into another major player in the electrical industry.
“We spent a year sorting it out, moved into larger office premises and quickly grew our turnover to several million pounds a year,” said Kevin.
“We then joined forces with a large regional property development company and 78 per cent of our work became focussed on them. I’m very proud of the success we achieved, but last year I decided it was time to move on again, and exited that business in order to seek out a new opportunity.”
It was a chance conversation with James and a local supplier that brought the ambitious pair together.
“I’m really proud that James approached me through a long term colleague to help him achieve his vision for Foley Electrical. He is so enthusiastic and determined, I know we can achieve huge success together,” said Kevin, 57.
“My career journey started at a similar point, offering everything from day-to-day electrical services for individual domestic clients, to larger installations and maintenance for industrial and commercial sites.
“So I know what can be achieved and I’m confident that James and I can work together to get this company to where it deserves to be.”
He added: “My first priority is to get a good understanding of what’s currently in place – no need to reinvent the wheel. We’ll be assessing our electricians’ technical ability and providing any additional training they need to make sure they remain at the very top of their game.
“Then we’ll look at opportunities like bringing in new skills and experience to bolster our offering.
And when he’s not busy looking after our customers and planning what we should do next, Kevin is actively involved with his close family life. With three daughters and now grandchildren there is always something to be done, and if I he ever manages to break away for a bit, he also enjoys an afternoon supporting his local rugby league team Hull FC!