When two motorbike couriers decided to form their own business 20 years ago, it would have been almost impossible for them to imagine having more than 100 vehicles and more than 150 staff one day.
But that is precisely what has happened to Delsol since it was formed in 1999. Managing director David Phillips has overseen the company’s robust growth.
In the latest in our blog series on the companies supported by Business Wales AGP, David Phillips explains how Delsol continues to transform and expand – and the lessons for other companies wanting to follow suit.
Tell us about Delsol.
We were based in Bethesda in Gwynedd initially, but we soon outgrew that base. We are now a regional logistics company, offering next day deliveries for parcels, pallets and Hazchem shipments, as well as same-day and direct loads across the UK.
We have storage facilities in both Sandycroft and Caernarfon, with more than 100 vehicles and we employ more than 150 people.
When we started, we approached local businesses in the Caernarfon and Bangor areas. We wanted to do something different. Rather than selling what we could do, we asked, what do you want? We then adapted to the customers’ needs.
What are your proudest moments in business so far?
By 2003, we’d outgrown our original premises. So we set about developing a purpose-built delivery depot and warehouse facility in Caernarfon and later opened a second depot in Sandycroft on the Cheshire border.
Both sites quickly flourished into busy depots operating in line with our strict quality standards.
We’re proud of the fact that we have created new employment opportunities in the communities we come from and serve.
If you were starting again, what would you do differently?
Looking back, perhaps we could have been a little bolder at times. But we have no real regrets about what we have done and where the company is going.
How has support from Business Wales AGP helped your business?
Business Wales AGP has been crucial in our growth story.
We were able to access a Welsh Government grant which meant we could relocate and build a new depot in Caernarfon. That provided a foundation from which our expansion could develop.
Business Wales AGP supported us with staff training and marketing for our new storage facility. This helped create new jobs in the area.
There’s been a direct link between our growth, the support of Business Wales AGP and the creation of high-quality jobs.
Since receiving Business Wales AGP support, we’ve expanded our workforce by 15 people. That reflects just how valuable Business Wales AGP has been to our recent expansion.
What advice and guidance would you give other businesses starting today?
● Set out firm business plans, which allow you to measure your efforts and achievements.
● Set targets. Make these realistic.
● Be honest with yourself.
● Find out what grants/help is available. It does not always need to be financial.
For more information on Delsol, visit here.