Chairman of South Wales-based The Safety Letterbox Company, Ian Brown accepted his own special delivery when he was awarded an MBE for services to business in the Queens Birthday Honours List 2010.
Ian, who founded the family-run company in 1986, said: I am absolutely delighted with the honour, but also particularly pleased that manufacturing has been recognised in this way. Its a key sector of our economy that deserves a lot more recognition.
His daughter, Alison Orrells, is now Managing Director of what has become the UKs leading manufacturer of secure mailing systems. SLBC works with a range of private and public sector organisations supplying mailbox and mailroom solutions worldwide from its Neath factory, which employs 30 local people.
Recognising the safety and security need in high-rise apartment blocks was the catalyst for launching the company, as Ian explains: Developing products for this marketplace, such as anti-arson solutions, quickly alerted us to emerging new and additional requirements. We then devoted much time and resources to addressing further safety and security issues that had not been tackled before, he says.
This led to the creation of a wide range of unique products that has since taken us into international markets. Increasingly our bespoke products of today are becoming the standard ones of tomorrow. Developing a mail solution for a customers specific requirements, such as a fire-rated product for example, invariably means it becomes part of our main range in the future, Ian adds.
With more than 120 mailbox models in its range, SLBC also offers a full turn-key supply and installation services of secure mail solutions to suit any site profile, location and budget. The firm is an approved supplier with Constructionline, the countrys largest register of pre-qualified construction contractors. Its qualified installation team holds CSCS accreditation (Construction Skills Certification Scheme) as evidence of on-site competency.