£1 Million expansion caps best ever year for FFDR

by Scott Douglas

Tuesday, October 30th, 2007

ONE of Scotland’s most successful disaster recovery firms is expanding after three major new business wins.

FFDR, an all trades contractor specialising in salvaging flood and fire-ravaged properties, expects to take on at least 10 new staff and add more than £1million to it’s annual turnover through the new contracts.

Celebrating the success, the company’s managing director Ronnie Klos also quashed rumours of a £10 million takeover bid for the Lochgelly-based business he established in 1998.

He added: “This is a fantastic time for us. The new contracts, coming at a time when we are also strengthening the management team, means we are moving forward very confidently.

“This underlines that we are a fast-growing company thanks to our commitment to high standards and excellence. It firmly establishes us as a force to be reckoned with in the insurance recovery sector.

“While these new deals are very exciting, we have also just renegotiated all of our existing major contracts. Basically, this safeguards all of our jobs until at least 2011 and in this sector that kind of security is amazing.

“Hopefully that will be a key factor in helping us to secure the additional skilled tradesmen we will be looking for, because everyone is in the same position when it comes to the difficulties of finding quality staff.”

Signing new three-year insurance contracts with Homeserve, Improveline and Lanes Assistance have capped a superb year for FFDR. In October the company also renegotiated three deals with its biggest existing clients, Direct Line, Halifax and Crawford and Company.

A £100,000 investment in new technology has given FFDR a vital edge, according to Klos. Three years ago the company bought the rights to Claimsort software which allows insurance companies to track FFDR staff in real time when dealing with customer queries.

The company also invested heavily in satellite tracking software for its fleet of 46 vehicles, which can be simply monitored through the web to significantly improve efficiency.

Meanwhile the firm has also made several key appointments vital to the continued success. Klos has established an Operations Manager’s with respected sector veteran Mike Tosh joining from a rival Scottish firm to fill the position.

Klos added: “Mike has been on my radar for a very long time and to finally secure his services is a real coup. Bear in mind, these contract successes were already in the pipeline and adding someone of Mike’s calibre and reputation can only help bring in further business.”

The other key new appointments include a promotion to Operations Supervisor for Simon Smith who has been with the company since 1999 and a return to FFDR for Ross Douglas, who left to become a joinery lecturer, but will now take on the role of Contracts Manager.

This week, the company also hopes to complete improvement and expansion work at its HQ in the former Lochgelly Cinema building. That £100,000 investment has created a new office suite and enhanced the working environment for all 72 staff.

Klos has now called an unprecedented staff meeting to take place on Wednesday (Oct 31) where he plans to outline the major developments to workers and explain the plans for the future.

However, that sparked speculation that the company was the subject of a £10 million takeover bid and Klos added: “I want to stop that kind of talk in its tracks right now.

“I have actually received two offers for the business in the past 12 months and turned down both. This kind of speculation can only cause uncertainty at a time when there is none.

“This business is not only rock solid but it is growing in the right way and at the right pace and there is no takeover or buyout on the horizon.”

ENDS

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