‘Tis the season to be jolly…

by Hannah van Rooyen

Merry Christmas from Smith Brothers

… and at Smith Brothers, we certainly have a lot to be happy about! 2017 has been an exciting year for the whole team and as we get ready for the Christmas break, we’ve been reflecting on some key highlights from the past year.

So, in keeping with the upcoming festivities, we’ve compiled our 12 stand-out achievements and events from 2017 – one for each of the days of Christmas!

1. Significant growth

We hit the headlines early on this year, as news spread that we’d trebled our turnover to £27m. With our forward order book filling up for 2018 – and our revenues estimated to reach £40m by the financial year-end in July – we’re looking forward to continued steady growth into the new year and beyond.

2. Office move

Our notable expansion led to us outgrowing our previous space on Red Doles Lane. So, after purchasing a 10,000 sqft unit at Lowfields Business Park in Elland, we packed up and moved to our new office in February. After investing in fresh décor and state of the art equipment, the HQ now well and truly feels like Smith Brothers’ home.

3. Training and development

Throughout the year, we’ve been focusing a lot of attention on the continued professional development of our workforce. Alongside supporting a number of employees through diplomas and apprenticeships, we’ve also run courses on first aid, software training and even helped two engineers towards becoming qualified drone pilots!

4. Big contract wins

Whilst it’s impossible to choose our favourite projects, we’ve had some really exciting contract wins for particularly prestigious projects this year. One of these saw us being appointed as the Independent Connections Provider (ICP) for the UK’s biggest battery storage facility in Lockleaze.

5. Expanding workforce

As our profit margins have grown, so has our talented team! This year we have been delighted to welcome a number of new people on board, including finance director Richard King, business development manager Danielle Tile and managing director Nick Gudgeon. We’ve also seen a number of promotions within the company and have celebrated the 10-year milestones of some long-serving colleagues.

6. Business development

2017 has seen us really start to hone in on the development of Smith Brothers as a business, in which Danielle has played a big part. Through building relationships with key clients and contractors throughout the South and further afield, we have seen our renown as the UK’s go-to ICP strengthening. We’re already looking forward to further building our network in 2018!

7. Industry events

The word about our turnkey services has really started to spread this year, and we’ve enjoyed exhibiting at a number of industry events. The first of these was edie LIVE in May, followed by Solar & Storage LIVE in October, and we’re looking forward to further upcoming conferences and exhibitions in the new year.

8. Irish market

As our project portfolio has continued to expand over the past 12 months, we have further broadened our horizons by extending our reach across the Irish Sea. With promising growth in the renewables sector projected for 2018, we’re excited to see what the next chapter in Ireland holds for Smith Brothers!

9. Away days

Despite our busy schedule, it’s not been all work and no play for us. At the end of summer, we were all treated to a fun day out of the office, with fishing trips, horse racing, 4x4 experiences and spa days galore! We’re big believers in building strong relationships within our team, so it was brilliant to get out of the office and spend some quality time together.

10. Charity and community support

We’ve put a lot of focus on giving back this year – and had a lot of fun in the process. Last week was an especially high-spirited one at Smith Brothers HQ, as we donned our Lycra for an indoor charity bikeathon! We managed to beat our targets and collectively raised more than £2.5k for Diabetes UK, the British Heart Foundation and Save the Children. But that’s not all – we’ve also backed a junior football team, attended a charity golf day and sponsored a charity gala dinner in the last few months. Further adventurous fundraising suggestions for next year are welcome!

11. Management team

Throughout 2017, we have strengthened our management team considerably. And whilst we still retain all the values that we’ve held since Richard and John established the firm back in 1999, we have certainly started a new chapter. With Nick joining as MD and the twins reprising their roles as joint chairmen, we’re looking forward to seeing how the Smith Brothers story unfolds.

12. Christmas party

But before we get to 2018, we have the Christmas party to look forward to – we’re so sure it’s going to be a fantastic evening that it’s already made the highlights list! As has become tradition, we’ll be celebrating with a delicious dinner and lots of dancing at Holdsworth House Hotel in Halifax. (For those of you who need reminding, we’ll be meeting at 7:00pm and eating at 7:30pm – don’t be late!)

If the past year is anything to go by, then 2018 is certainly set to be another great one. So, from everyone at Smith Brothers, all there’s left for us to do is wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Our office is closing on Friday 22nd December, so we’ll see you when we’re back on Tuesday 2nd January.

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